Hyundai was seen testing a fully autonomous, driverless version of its IONIQ 5 electric crossover in Las Vegas in January, but this week the automaker showed off technology in action that will delight anyone dreading parallel parking.
Developed by its Mobis division specializing in new mobility solutions (the same one that works on drop-down touch screens), the e-Corner system notably allows the four wheels to pivot up to an angle of 90 degrees and therefore the vehicle to move laterally – enough to make the GMC Hummer EV jealous with its “Crab Walk” mode.
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A second feature turns the wheels inward 45 degrees so the vehicle can literally spin. In another scenario, a front wheel is locked and the vehicle then rotates around this axis.
Check it out in the video below:
For clarity, this experimental IONIQ 5 includes an e-Corner module at each corner integrating steering, brakes, suspension and a small electric motor. There is no mechanical link between the steering wheel and the front wheels like in a conventional car. The steering is purely electronic. It’s not ideal for driving sensations on the road, but seeing the possibilities here, we are ready to embark.
The system, first unveiled in 2018, is being tested for the first time on public roads and Hyundai intends to integrate it into production models in the future when it is ready. When? The goal is 2025, but that remains to be seen.
We imagine that by this time, the engineers and designers will have found a way to make the e-Corner modules more compact so that the layout of the wheels and fenders is more normal. What do you think?