Just Imagine If...Your Car Could Walk!
Cars28 February 2019
PICTURE THE SCENE: AN EMERGENCY VEHICLE IS RUSHING ALONG A ROAD TO THE SITE OF AN ACCIDENT WHEN ITS PATH IS BLOCKED BY A FIVE-FOOT-HIGH WALL. IN THE DISTANCE, ACROSS TREACHEROUS TERRAIN, A NUMBER OF PEOPLE ARE IN DIRE NEED OF MEDICAL HELP. WITHOUT MISSING A BEAT, THE VEHICLE RISES UP ON FOUR LEGS, CLIMBS OVER THE WALL, AND WALKS ACROSS THE OBSTACLE-STREWN GROUND TO THOSE INJURED.
It sounds like a scene from a sci-fi movie set in the distant future, but this could be a reality a lot sooner than you might think. That’s because Hyundai unveiled Elevate, the first vehicle with moveable legs, at the CES Show in Las Vegas in January. The first Ultimate Mobility Vehicle blends technology found in electric cars with state-of-the-art robotics to move across terrain that is too rugged for even the most capable off-road vehicles. The robotic legs have been designed so that Elevate can walk like either a mammal or a reptile, meaning it can move in any direction, climb a five-foot wall, step over a five-foot gap and walk over difficult terrain, keeping its passengers completely level at all times. The legs fold up in drive mode, meanwhile, so Elevate can travel at road speeds just like any other vehicle.
John Suh, Vice President and Head of CRADLE, Hyundai’s Centre for Robotic-Augmented Design in
Living Experiences, believes the possibilities are endless. People who need a wheelchair ramp, for example, could hail a Hyundai Elevate that could walk up to their front door, level itself, and allow the wheelchair to enter.
Go to Hyundai’s YouTube channel to see Elevate in action