Saturday, 17 August, 2019

Kia Habaniro concept unveiled

Kia Habaniro concept Close Facebook Like Tweet Widget
Russell Knight | 18 April, 2019, 20:25

The system uses AI-based emotional intelligence to monitor when the driver looks up to the top of the windshield where conventional rear view mirrors are traditionally located.

On Wednesday at the New York International Auto Show, Kia unveiled the HabaNiro, aka "The Everything Car". But the HabaNiro can't be so easily defined. Kia classifies the HabaNiro as an ECEV-which it says stands for "The Everything Car EV"-but that's only the beginning of the acronyms and initialisms".

Design is what the Habaniro is about, the Kia has even invented a new designation for this body style: the Everything Car.

At 171 inches long, the HabaNiro is nearly identical in length to the regular production Niro.

Michael Cole, Kia's COO and executive vice president, called the HabaNiro "a genius work of skill and imagination".

Fitting in with the car's name, the Habaniro has a Lava Red panel on the C-pillar and a red interior. A single character line reinforces the stance, while the electric architecture allowed designers to push the wheels to the further corner for a wide stance.

Inside the HabaNiro is a cabin finished predominantly in red, featuring front seats created to appear as if they are floating within the cabin. A concave instrument panel with a touchpad handles cabin functions and a conceptual system called the Technical Option Sharing System lets passengers move options across the windshield display like chess pieces. And the patterned floor is lit with changeable mood lighting that "reflects onto surfaces within the cabin", which sounds like what you get in the club.

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Inside the auto, it's very techy, with a retractable steering wheel for when the vehicle is at maximum Level-5 autonomy and the occupants need more space. Whether such a thing would bring pleasure to most drivers, Kia doesn't say.

R.E.A.D. also enables the HabaNiro's Eye Tracking System (ETS) with 180° rearview video display. The vehicle has smooth uninterrupted cures around the top, sides, rear and bonnet.

Kia says it won't use this technology to manipulate drivers (like the vehicle deciding to take you to a taco shop when you seem hungry), but it shows the potential to combine AI with cars.

The least outrageous stuff comes when Kia talks about the HabaNiro's powertrain, and that's probably because it is barely mentioned.

Kia acknowledges the assumption that this is just a design exercise but goes on to point out that the Stinger and the Telluride both started off as concepts that weren't intended for production.

HabaNiro is a design subject which is a vision for the future of electrified vehicles from Kia. We'd have to agree, and all cynicism aside, we think the HabaNiro looks great.

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