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Hyundai’s Curb Concept: The Crossover Of The Future?

Posted in Concept Cars, Featured, Hyundai, NAIAS by Kurt Ernst | January 12th, 2011 | 2 Responses |
Hyundai Curb Concept

Hyundai's Curb concept. Image: Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai doesn’t want you calling the Curb a crossover. It’s not a compact SUV, either, nor is it a multipurpose utility vehicle. Hyundai defines the Curb as a Compact UAV, or Urban Activity Vehicle; in other words, it’s meant to survive potholes and nightclub parking lots, not mud pits and Class III trails. It also isn’t aimed at the traditional SUV or crossover audience; instead, Hyundai has designed the Curb solely for Generation Y, a group generally more concerned with social interaction than with driving or car ownership.

Image: Hyundai Motor America

Designed in California, the Curb’s wrap-around glass was inspired by the faceshield of a motorcycle helmet. It’s also designed to give better peripheral vision, something critical for driving in a crowded urban environment, unless you don’t care about trading paint with fellow motorists. The Curb is built to carry passengers or cargo, depending upon owners needs: the exhaust vents, for example, pop out to reveal a built in bike rack. The roof contains pop-up roof rack towers, enabling owners to quickly add a ski rack or cargo pod. Since the headrests are built into the roof, the seats fold flat for maximum cargo capacity. The rear hatch features a clamshell design for cargo loading, and the Curb uses the same “third door” layout as the Veloster for easy passenger access.

Image: Hyundai Motor America

Inside, the Curb boasts “Empowered Connectivity”. A large acrylic screen shares information between driver and passengers, and the steering wheel itself features a built in monitor to provide the driver with data. A heads up display on the windshield is used to show navigation and mapping information. Rearview mirrors are replaced by cameras, and a real time image of surrounding traffic is projected on the heads up display. The central display can also be used to show album cover art or vehicle diagnostics; it can even be used as a video phone. The Curb showcases Hyundai’s Blue Link technology, including Location Sharing, which broadcasts your location to members of your social network. If you’re stepping out on your girlfriend, you may want to make sure this particular feature is disabled.

For now, the Curb is just a concept vehicle, but that’s how the Veloster started life as well. If there’s sufficient interest, chances are good that Hyundai could put the Curb into production within a few years time.

Source: Hyundai Motor America

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