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Title:
LIGHT ELECTRIC-POWER QUADRICYCLE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/162845
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Door for vehicles, comprising: a wall (2) movable between a closing condition in which it closes an opening (A) defining an access area (Α') to the vehicle (100) and an opening condition in which it is at least partially removed from said opening (A), said wall (2) having an upper portion (2a) arranged above a loading plane (101 ) of the vehicle (100) and a lower portion (2b) arranged below said loading plane (101 ); and a translation linkage (3) of the wall (2) to switch the wall (2) itself from the respective opening and closing condition; the translation linkage (3) being associated with the lower portion (2b) of the wall (2) to be below said loading plane (101 ).

Inventors:
GOZZI, Luigi (Via Vittor Pisani 16, Milano, 20124, IT)
Application Number:
IB2019/051365
Publication Date:
August 29, 2019
Filing Date:
February 20, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
ALFAZERO S.P.A. (Via Vittor Pisani 16, Milano, 20124, IT)
International Classes:
B60J5/04; E05D15/10
Foreign References:
US4932714A1990-06-12
US20060087145A12006-04-27
CH318747A1957-01-31
EP1972478A22008-09-24
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
ZERMANI, Umberto (Viale Lancetti 17, Milano, 20158, IT)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. Vehicle, comprising a light electric-powered quadricycle having:

- at least one supporting frame (103) defining a passenger compartment (104) of the vehicle (100) having an opening (A) between two side pillars (106, 107), a lower cross member and an upper cross member (102, 105);

- a loading platform (101 ) arranged inside the passenger compartment (104) and defining a support surface of a user, said opening (A) having an access area (A') to the passenger compartment (104) included between the loading plane (101 ) and the upper cross member (105);

- a lower compartment (108) interposed between the loading plane (101 ) and the lower cross member (102); and

- a door (1 ) having a wall (2) movable between a closing condition in which it closes an opening (A) defining a vehicle (100) access area (A') and an opening condition in which it is at least partially removed from said opening (A), said wall (2) having an upper portion (2a) arranged above a loading plane (101 ) of the vehicle (100) and a lower portion (2b) arranged below said loading plane (101 ) ; said door (1 ) also comprises a translation linkage (3) of the wall (2) to switch the same wall (2) between the respective opening and closing condition;

characterized in that said translation linkage (3) is associated only at the lower portion (2b) of the wall (2) to be below said loading plane (101 ) and in that said wall (2) in the respective opening condition is engaged to the vehicle (100) only through said translation linkage (3).

2. Vehicle according to the previous claim, characterized in that said wall (2) has a peripheral development coinciding with the peripheral development of said opening (A) and in that, in the closing condition, the respective upper portion (2a) coincides with the access area (A') and the lower portion (2b) coincides with a lower compartment (108) of the vehicle (100) comprised between the loading plane (101 ) and a lower cross member (102) of the vehicle (100) close to the ground.

3. Vehicle according to the preceding claim, characterized in that said translation linkage (3) comprises a first arm (4) having a first end (4a) rotatably engaged in said lower compartment (108) and a second end (4b) rotatably engaged in said lower portion (2b) of the wall (2).

4. Vehicle according to the previous claim, characterized in that said first arm (4) has at least one arched portion (4c) interposed between the first and second ends (4a, 4b); said arched portion (4c) being completely housable in said lower compartment (108) in the closed condition and being protruding outside the lower compartment (108) and at least partially surrounding a pillar (107) of the vehicle (100) in the opening condition.

5. Vehicle according to claim 3 or 4, characterized in that said translation linkage (3) further comprises a second arm (5) having a first end (5a) rotatably engaged in said lower compartment (108) and a second end (5b) rotatably engaged in said lower portion (2b) of the wall (2).

6. Vehicle according to the previous claim, characterized in that the second arm (5) is placed next to the first arm (4) and in that said arms (4, 5) lie on respective parallel planes and develop below the loading plane (101 ).

7. Vehicle according to any one of the preceding claims, characterized in that said linkage (3) moves the wall (2) between the respective opening/closing conditions along a rectilinear portion (T1 ) in which the wall (2) is moved away/brought closer to the opening (A) and an arched portion (T2) in which the wall (2) is translated to/from a side area and placed next to the vehicle (100).

8. Vehicle according to the previous claim, characterized in that said rectilinear portion (T1 ) is perpendicular to a lying plane of said opening (A); said wall (2) having a pair of side edges (6, 7) that can be engaged/disengaged simultaneously with respective pillars (106, 107) of the vehicle (100) in the closing/opening conditions.

9. Vehicle according to the previous claim, characterized in that said wall (2) comprises an upper edge and a lower edge opposite to each other and defining with the side edges (6, 7) the perimeter of the wall (2); said edges being engageable/disengageable simultaneously to the cross members (102, 105) and pillars (106, 107) of the vehicle (100) defining said opening (A).

10. Vehicle according to the previous claim, characterized in that said frame (103) further comprises a side wall placed next to a respective side pillar close to the rear area of the vehicle; said movable wall (2) in the opening condition being at least partially overlapped with the side wall of the frame (103). 1 1. Vehicle according to claim 1 , characterized in that it further comprises a lock for locking the movable wall in the respective closing condition; said lock being arranged between each side pillar (106, 107) of the frame and a respective side edge (6, 7) of the wall (2).

Description:
LIGHT ELECTRIC-POWER QUADRICYCLE

The present invention relates to a door for vehicles.

In particular, the present invention relates to a door to access the passenger compartment of a vehicle which is preferably a light quadricycle.

Even more in particular, the present invention finds particular application in light electric-powered quadricycles.

It should be specified that the term "light quadricycle" refers to a vehicle classified in the L6e or L7e category according to the European regulation in force in the filing of the present patent application.

Specifically, the L6e category in question includes four-wheeled vehicles, capable of a maximum speed < 45 km/h, equipped with a running order mass < 425 kg, a power propulsive system £ 6 kW and a maximum of two seats, including the driver's seat.

The L7e category includes quadricycles similar to those classified as L6e but capable of a maximum speed < 90 km/h, equipped with a running order mass < 450 kg, a power propulsive system £ 15 kW and a maximum of two seats, including the driver's seat.

This type of vehicles, which stands out for its small size and the remarkable efficiency, is considered as an alternative both to the "city car" and the scooters, particularly valid in city contexts.

However, precisely because of the small size of this type of vehicle, technical limits to improvements in terms of comfort emerge, with particular reference to the access doors to the passenger compartment.

In particular, light quadricycles have only the classic doors hinged frontally and openable by folding. This type of door, although very common in vehicles, has the important drawback of not being practical in limited spaces such as for example in parking conditions wherein vehicles are laterally approached. In this situation, in fact, to be completely opened the classic doors need a space outside the vehicle substantially equal to the length of the door itself. It follows therefore that in narrow spaces around the vehicle, the user must pass through a very limited area to access the passenger compartment.

In order to overcome such drawback, larger vehicles are provided with sliding doors notoriously easier in reduced spaces with respect to conventional hinged doors. The sliding doors, such as for example those mounted on the van-type vehicles, in fact allow to completely move the door from the access area to the passenger compartment even in very narrow spaces conditions around the vehicle.

In this case the doors are slidingly guided by a respective guide formed on the external body of the vehicle in a rear position and adjacent to the access opening to the passenger compartment.

The guide allows the door to slide outside of said access area and to position adjacent to the side wall of the vehicle without having to project from the overall dimensions determined by the vehicle itself.

However, in order to sustain the entire door, the guide must have a length at least equal to that of the door.

For this reason, it is not possible to adopt this type of doors in the specific case of light quadricycles, or in general of very small and insufficient size vehicles for the production of the above-mentioned sliding guides.

In this context, the technical task underlying the present invention is to propose a door for vehicles that overcomes the drawbacks of the prior art above-mentioned.

In particular, it is an object of the present invention to provide a door which can be used in light quadricycles and able to translate laterally without having to provide external support guides which can be formed on the body of the vehicle.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a door for light electric-powered quadricycle, which is structurally simple and light and at the same time that is efficient and stably associated to the frame of the vehicle in the respective closing conditions. Another object of the present invention is to propose a light electric- powered quadricycle, equipped with an access system to the passenger compartment which would be easy even in very narrow spaces.

The mentioned technical task and the specified aims are substantially achieved by a door for vehicles, including the technical specifications set out in one or more of the appended claims.

Further characteristics and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent from the description of an exemplary, but not exclusive, and therefore non-limiting preferred embodiment of a door for vehicles.

Such description will be set forth hereinafter with reference to the accompanying drawings given only for illustrative and, therefore, non limiting purpose, wherein:

- figure 1 is a perspective view of a vehicle equipped with a door according to the present invention in a closing condition;

- figures 2, 3 and 4 are perspective views of the vehicle equipped with the door according to the present invention and in the respective opening positions;

- figures 5, 6 and 7 are plan views from above of the vehicle equipped with the door according to the invention in the respective opening conditions of the figures 2-4; and

- figure 8 shows a schematic plan view from the above of a pair of doors according to the invention and which can be mounted on a respective vehicle.

With reference to the above described figures, reference number 1 globally indicates a door for vehicles 100 according to the present invention.

It should be specified that the present invention can be used in motor vehicles of any type, equipped with an inner cab and at least one access area to such cab. However, it should be specified that the present invention finds advantageous application in light electric-powered quadricycles, of the type specified above and identified in the L6e and L7e categories according to the European laws in force at the filing date of the present patent application.

In particular, the door 1 comprises a wall 2 movable between a closing condition (figure 1 ) wherein it close an opening A of the vehicle 100, and an opening condition (figures 2-4) wherein it is at least partially removed from the opening A.

With reference to figure 4 wherein the door 1 is shown in a condition wherein it is completely removed from the opening A, it is noted that the opening A comprises an access area A' to the vehicle 100 which allows a user to get on/off the vehicle 100. The access area A' is preferably defined above a loading plane 101 adapted to support the user inside the vehicle 100.

It should be specified that the term loading plane 101 refers to the floor surface for supporting the vehicle seats and supporting the user. This surface is spaced from a lower cross member 102 of the vehicle which constitutes the lowest and close to the ground portion (figures 1 -4).

In greater detail, the vehicle 100 comprises a supporting frame 103 which defines a passenger compartment 104 of the vehicle and said access opening A to the passenger compartment 104.

The frame 103 also comprises the lower cross member 102 and an upper cross member 105 opposed to the lower 102 and defining the top portion more distant from the ground.

Still, the frame 103 also comprises two side pillars 106, 107 spaced from each other and each of which is connected to the respective ends with the cross members 102, 105.

In this situation, the opening A is comprised between the two pillars 106, 107 and the two cross members 102, 105. Below the loading plane 102 arranged in the passenger compartment 104 a further lower compartment 108 extends that is comprised between the loading plane 101 itself and the lower cross member 102. The lower compartment 108 is adapted to contain mechanical parts of the vehicle and electric wirings, avoiding that the same are contained in the passenger compartment 104.

The wall 2 has preferably a panel structure which defines together with the rest of the body of the vehicle the respective side bodywork.

In particular, the wall 2 has peripheral development coinciding with the peripheral development of the opening A and has an upper portion 2a arranged above said loading plane 101 and a lower portion 2b arranged under said loading plane 101.

In other words, the wall 2 which preferably has a substantially rectangular configuration and is defined by two contiguous portions 2a, 2b wherein in the respective closing condition of the upper portion 2a is adapted to close the access area A' to the passenger compartment 104, while the lower portion 2b is arranged at said lower compartment 108.

The door 1 further comprises a translation linkage 3 of the wall 2 to switch the door 2 itself between said opening and closing conditions.

Advantageously, as better identified in figures 3 and 4, the translation linkage 3 is associated with the lower portion 2b of the wall 2 to be below the loading plane 101 and contained in particular in the space defined by the compartment 108.

More specifically, the translation linkage 3 is connected to the wall 2 only at the lower portion 2b.

In this situation the translation linkage 3 is arranged in a position of the vehicle 100 which does not affect the access area A' to the passenger compartment 104 dedicated only to the passage of the user.

In other words, the access area A' is clear of any mechanical component of the vehicle 100 or of the door 1 in order to take advantage of the full width of the area A' in the respective getting on/off operations from the passenger compartment 104.

With particular reference to the schematic view of figure 5, the translation linkage 3 consist of a first arm 4 having a first end 4a rotatably engageable within said lower compartment 108, and a second end 4b rotatably engaged with the lower portion 2b of the wall 2.

The rotating joints connecting the first arm 4 are not described and shown in detail since they are of a known type.

Preferably, the first end 4a of the first arm 4 is associated to the side pillar 107 closest to the rear area of the vehicle 100.

The first arm 4 also has at least one arched portion 4c interposed between the first and second end 4a, 4b, which in the above-mentioned closing condition has convexity toward outside the passenger compartment 104.

In greater detail, in the closing condition of the door 1 the first arm 4 is completely housed inside the lower compartment 108, while in the opening condition protrudes outside the lower compartment 108 and at least partially surrounding the rear side pillar 107.

It should in fact be noted from figure 7 that in the opening condition the arched portion 4c extends at least partially around the pillar 107 to avoid as much as possible projections external to the vehicle 100.

The translation linkage 3 further comprises a second arm 5 having a first end 5a rotatably engageable inside the lower compartment 108 and a second end 5b rotatably engaged to the lower portion 2b of the door 1.

The second arm 5 is approached to the first arm 6 and offset with respect thereto. In this way, arms 5, 6 lie in respective parallel planes to be overlapped in motion without interfering with each other reciprocally.

Advantageously, with reference to figures 5-7, the linkage 3 moves the wall 2 along a rototranslation path.

This path is defined by a rectilinear portion T1 (figure 5) and an arched portion T2 (figure 6, 7). In the first rectilinear portion T1 the wall 2 is moved away/closer to the opening A according to a direction transversal to the lying plane of the opening A itself. In the second arched portion T2 the wall 2 is translated toward/from a side area and approached to the vehicle 100. In particular, in the arched portion T2 the wall 2 performs an arched path around the rear pillar 107 to slide and move translate toward a rear area of the vehicle 100.

It should be noted that during the stroke of the wall 2, the same is always kept on a plane parallel to the lying plane of the side wall of the vehicle. Therefore, the door does not protrude with one end outside the overall dimensions of the vehicle 1 and remains always stick to the side overall dimensions of the vehicle itself.

As described above, the rectilinear portion T1 is perpendicular to the lying plane of the opening A. This allows to associate/disassociate the door 1 from the vehicle 100 by leaning at the same time the edge of the door 1 to the cross members 102, 105 and the pillars 106, 107.

In particular, the wall 2 has a pair of side edges 6, 7 which can be engaged/disengaged simultaneously to respective side pillars 106, 107. The edges 6, 7 are preferably equipped with a lock (not shown in detail) that closes and secures the door 1 to the vehicle in the respective closing condition of the wall 2. The presence of a double lock on the sides of the wall 2, allows a greater stability of the door 1 and safety with respect to any break-in attempts.

It should be noted that wall 2 described above, is supported in opening conditions only from the linkage 3 and then by the two arms 4, 5.

Therefore, in addition to not define any overall dimensions in the access area A', the door 1 has a structure which is extremely simple and light and particularly low cost.

Preferably, as is shown in the accompanying figures, the vehicle 100 is equipped with two doors 1 arranged on opposite sides and made according to the above. It should also be noted that the presence of the linkage 3 allows a sliding movement of the wall 2, with consequent advantages in terms of overall dimensions during the opening steps of the door 1.

The possibility to use a sliding wall 2 even for a light vehicle 100 and therefore of reduced dimensions, is determined by the structure of the linkage 3, positioned below the plane 101 and capable of supporting the entire wall 2.

The presence of the two arms 4, 5 is able to support the wall 2 in the opening condition, forcing the wall 2 to do a rototranslational movement very limited and comparable to that of a sliding door.

Moreover, positioning the two arms 4, 5, allows to avoid cluttering the access area A', allowing greater ease in the get on/off operations from the cab 104.

Still, as specified above, the movement of the wall 2 in the rectilinear portion T1 allows to constrain simultaneously the whole wall to the frame 103.

Advantageously, it is possible to achieve the lock in two opposite areas of the wall 2 in order to make the closing condition more stable.

Finally, the present invention proves to be particularly versatile since it can be used for any type of vehicle, preferably light vehicles of the type mentioned above.