Hyundai recently unveiled its concept for the IONIQ 7 at AutoMobility LA and it is an eye-catcher. This SUEV (sport utility electric vehicle) is category-bending with its unique personality and features.
At a glance, the exterior of the IONIQ 7 visually resembles that of the upcoming 2022 Kia EV9 because of the smooth panels and pixelated headlights. The IONIQ 7 has a more flowing design, however, with a swooped roofline making the exterior very aerodynamic. The design looks somewhat rugged, with the cabin extending beyond the rear wheels, but it’s more modern in nature with its smooth lines and rounded edges.
The IONIQ 7 concept is built on the Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) from Hyundai Motor Group. This is a BEV-specific architecture that provides an elongated 3.2-meter wheelbase and flat platform floor. The wheels feature integrated Active Air Flaps, these deploy or retract based on brake-cooling and how much drag is needed. As mentioned before, the 7 has pixelated headlights, a signature of IONIQ, called the Parametric Pixel lights which give a Welcome Light Sequence when the car is started.
If you thought the exterior was out there, then buckle up for the interior. The interior’s design was based around the idea of freedom of movement, meant to feel like a living space on wheels. It lives up to that name, almost not feeling like a car at some points. According to Hyundai, this is its future vision for more mobility in cars.
For starters, the pillarless coach doors open outwards to reveal that the floor is flat and carpeted, giving the ability to furnish the back differently from the row-based seating arrangements we’re all accustomed to. The seats are supposed to give a lounge experience, with the back row being an L-shaped cushioned bench that looks like a couch. The other seats swivel around and their arrangement can be customized depending on whether the car is in driver-controlled or autonomous driving mode. There is also a Universal Island console.
The 7 also offers various in-car appliances which can be personalized for individual passengers and a multi-functional Smart Hub graphic user interface. When the front seats and back seating combine with the Smart Hub, it creates an environment for quality time alongside the glow of ambient light coming from the side door. The roof of the 7 concept features a panoramic screen that can display various content depending on what the passenger likes, changing up the atmosphere of the interior. Not to leave anything out, Hyundai included a built-in mini-fridge that cools beverages while the car is in motion and a separate shoe compartment that keeps passengers’ footwear fresh.
The dash of the interior is downright futuristic, with more pixelated lights and two knobs at either end whose purpose is unknown. There is another layer to the dash which lowers and appears to have an area to place items which is also lit up. If you’re wondering why we haven’t mentioned the steering wheel yet, it’s because there isn’t one. Yup. No steering wheel. Instead, the driver’s seat has a control stick that retracts when not in use. It’s unclear whether this aspect will make it through to the making of the actual automobile, but it will likely be a polarizing feature, to say the least.
Hyundai used several amounts of eco-friendly material to reduce pollution from the production process. These include the bio-paint on the exterior and interior, mineral plaster, bamboo wood and carpet, and bio-resin. Copper and hygienically treated fabrics with antibacterial properties were also used to ensure a clean interior.
Along those lines, the Hygiene Airflow System and UVC Sterilization are in place. The Hygiene AirFlow System takes in air through air intakes in the roof rails and pushes it put through the exterior vent behind the rear wheels. It also takes in air through the dashboard and sends it out through the rear vents. This works whether the vehicle is moving or not and reduces cross-contamination among passengers.
Unlike the Hygiene AirFlow System, the UVC Sterilization only activates when the vehicle has no passengers inside. All of the retractable features come out and sanitizing UVC lights help to clean the interior of bacteria and viruses. Additionally, sanitizing storage compartments are also located in the bench and Smart Hub console for cleaning personal items.
Because of the E-GMP platform it has, the IONIQ 7 should also be able to give a targeted driving range of over 300 miles and have ultra-fast charging abilities. With a 350-kW charger, the 7 should be able to go from 10% energy to 80% energy in around 20 minutes.