Hyundai is set to take the covers off what might be the craziest concept of 2019 when it unveils the Elevate on Monday.
Being shown for the first time at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on Monday, it’s the first UMV – or Ultimate Mobility Vehicle – fitted with legs so it can walk over difficult terrains.
And it’s not the only wacky offroader that will be shown to the public for the first time in the next week – Suzuki set to preview two modified versions of its latest Jimny SUV.
© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Strolling into 2019: Hyundai is due to unveil one of the craziest concept vehicles we’re likely to see all year when it takes the wraps off the Elevate in Las Vegas on January 7
Hyundai has teased what’s in store for January 7 with the early release of a preview image of the incredible vehicle in question.
Elevate looks set to become one of the most bonkers concepts of the year.
From the preview image alone it appears to have four driven wheels attached to robotic legs.
Each wheeled limb has four joints, meaning it’s the first car to have knees and hips designed to strut across harsh terrains.
© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The Korean vehicle has four driven wheels attached to robotic legs. The closest thing we can compare it to is an AT-AT (All Terrain Armored Transport) Walker from the Star Wars franchiseThe closest thing we can compare it to is an AT-AT (All Terrain Armored Transport) Walker from the Star Wars franchise – though with far less destructive aims.
The legs are designed to ‘take people where no vehicle has been before’, according to the Korean car maker.
In a short statement released online, it said: ‘At CES 2019, Hyundai will present a totally new vehicle concept.
‘This vehicle combines the power of robotics and EV technology to take people where no vehicle has been before.
‘The four-legged Hyundai ‘Elevate’ will redefine our perception of vehicular mobility.’
© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The Transformer-like legs are extended by a petrol generator hidden under the bonnet that powers the 900-pound hydraulic pumps that lift the large SUV into the air. It was designed to avoid queues of trafficFew technical details have been released as yet, though we do know it is powered by electricity and guided by robotics, meaning it should have some autonomous driving – or walking – elements.
Where would it be used? The early-release image suggests an apocalyptic scenario with a surface of huge rocks.
With a big red cross on the side of the Elevate, it appears to be attending a disaster scene, possibly being used as an ambulance to reach stricken humans (we think).
The last time we saw something like this was back in 2017 when an American design team created a Jeep Grand Cherokee that could rise on stilts to drive over traffic.
© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited We have seen cars on stilts before, though. Take this Hum Rider prototype from the US
Called the Hum Rider, it was designed by mechanical effects engineer Scott Beverly of Californian fabricators A2Zfx.
That was a one-off, as the Hyundai is likely to be with the manufacturer clearly stating that it is a ‘design concept’ and ‘prototype’.
And the fact it is being launched at a tech event rather than a motor show suggests we won’t be seeing one strutting down the road any time soon.
Cutesy Suzuki Jimny to get tough new image
© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The Jimny Sierra is a retro pick-up version of Suzuki’s super-cute 2019 SUV
Also making a global debut in the next week are two new concepts based on the cheeky Jimny SUV.
While the standard car has as much tough demeanor as a fluffy Shih Tzu, the pair have a far more aggressive look designed to defy its cutesy image.
Both will be showcased at the 2019 Tokyo Auto Salon from January 11.
The more eye-catching of the two is the Jimny Sierra that shows what a pick-up version of the SUV would look like with an open load bay at the back.
The addition of wood paneling, golf paint, towing hitches LED off-road driving lamps and retro wheels make it look like a modern twist on an early-edition Land Rover.
© Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The Jimny Survive is expedition ready, with crash plates, headlight protectors, a winch and steel tracks to cross difficult terrains
On display alongside it in the Japanese capital will be the Jimny Survive, which converts the family 4×4 into a rugged van.
It gets extra offroad provisions with crash plates to protect the underside of the vehicle, a front-mounted winch, external roll bar and set of steel tracks that can be used to cross rivers.
With the conventional Jimny being one of the standout new releases of 2018, expect the duo to win plenty of fans when they’re officially unveiled.