Hyundai Mobis has released a video demonstrating its clever new ‘e-corner System’ on the Ioniq 5, a facet the Korean brand believes could revolutionize mobility in the upcoming electric vehicle era.
The e-corner system from Hyundai Mobis – the marque’s official parts and service arm that debuted as the ‘Hyundai Precision & Industries Corporation’ in 1977 – features four wheels that can rotate up to 90 degrees, allowing vehicles to which it is equipped greater maneuverability in tighter confines.
Dubbed a “key mobility technology for electrification and autonomous driving,” the e-corner system is an all-in-one package that features steer-by-wire, brake by wire, and more malleable dampers on each wheel, allowing them to move separately and/or in tandem.
Tellingly, each wheel is powered by an independent in-wheel motor, suggesting the e-corner system demo model does not draw power, in this case, from the Ioniq’s single-motor or 58 kWh / 77.4 kWh battery. Given that no details were provided with regards wheel or tire size though, plus the added weight of the system, one does wonder how much the e-corner affects the EV’s range (the Preferred Long Range trim in Canada offers the maximum, estimated 488 km).
Four features are demonstrated in the demo video. The first – “Crab Driving” – shows all four wheels on the e-corner-equipped Ioniq 5 rotating 90-degrees in the same direction, designed specifically for parallel parking. The second – “Zero Turn” – rotates the front wheels inwards and the rear wheels outwards, effectively allowing the EV to turn 360-degrees in a limited space. “Pivot Turns” also rotates the rear outwards while the front wheels remain straight to make more finnicky parking sport easier to get into.
Lastly, “Diagonal Driving” rotates all four wheels 45-degrees in the same direction for … well, diagonal driving. This helps you avoid obstacles on the road, or potentially slice up your fellow motorists depending on much coffee you’ve had that morning.
Interestingly, Hyundai Mobis also claims that, although the ‘crab walk’ technology has also been showcased on the Hummer EV, the system is not currently being mass-produced. With the demo video featuring real-world footage in South Korea, said to be another first, it does suggest the Hyundai Group, as it amps up electrification across both the Hyundai and Kia brands, may be looking into e-corner – or at least facets therein – as more than just a marketing gimmick.
“We are idealizing the e-Corner System in order to meet the demands for future mobility,” Hyundai Mobis’ Cheon Jae-seung explains. “We will secure different types of customized mobility solutions that can be applied in autonomous driving and PBVs to solidify our vision of reaching new heights as a mobility platform provider.”