Is Hyundai Serious About Building a Walking Robotic Automotive?

Idea automobiles at auto reveals not often make it to manufacturing, and after they do, they’re often in some watered-down format. (Porsche being a rare exception.) So when Hyundai revealed a strolling automotive idea virtually two years in the past — not at an auto present, however at CES, an much more extravagant showcase of pipe goals — we made our jokes about our inevitable robotic overlords and moved on.

Then final month, Bloomberg reported that Hyundai was in talks to buy Boston Dynamics from present proprietor SoftBank for one thing like a billion {dollars}. Sure, that Boston Dynamics, the one behind the robot dog Spot that’s straight out of Black Mirror and the much more terrifying humanoid robot Atlas. Then the oldsters at Automotive and Driver neatly put two and two collectively. 

“Why is Hyundai so within the robotic canine?” the magazine asked. “We now have a concept, and it has one thing to do with Spot’s legs; Hyundai could wish to adapt these limbs for its personal utterly wild walking-car idea.”

That concept is probably not as outlandish because it sounds, as Hyundai’s Elevate idea, because it was dubbed at CES 2019, isn’t imagined to be a each day driver. As an alternative, the preliminary thought was to construct a so-called “Final Mobility Car” (or UMV) that might act as a form of go-anywhere emergency search-and-rescue automobile. Add the really ground-breaking tech from Boston Dynamics robots to Hyundai’s world scale, and that might grow to be a actuality before you suppose.

As Automotive and Driver famous, if this deal goes by means of — which isn’t a certain factor but — it is going to be the third time within the final decade that Boston Dynamics has modified palms. Google dad or mum firm Alphabet acquired it in 2013, then offered it to SoftBank in 2017. Possibly with Hyundai, the corporate will lastly flip a revenue; as Bloomberg wrote, that’s one milestone that up to now has been out of attain.

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