(from Hyundai Press
Release) HYUNDAI NUVIS CONCEPT MAKES WORLD DEBUT AT NEW YORK
The world will have the
opportunity to peer into Hyundai’s future when the Nuvis concept
makes its world debut at the 2009 New York Auto Show.
The Nuvis is the eleventh signature concept car to be designed at
the company’s California Design Center in Irvine, Calif. In addition
to showcasing the brand’s cutting-edge capabilities, Nuvis also
hints at a possible design direction for a future-generation
crossover, blending attributes of a tall urban car and a premium
Consistent with Hyundai’s pledge to lead all brands in U.S. fuel
economy by 2015, Nuvis is powered by Hyundai’s Hybrid Blue Drive
architecture, which uses breakthrough lithium polymer battery
EVOLUTION OF THE DESIGN
In developing the
initial sketches, Hyundai designers considered the interplay of
natural, fluid elements with more rigid surfaces and structures to
create the illusion of constant motion. Specifically, designers
studied the way water splits across and flows around the hull and
sides of a boat, creating a wake, or the way wind shapes a snowdrift
or flurries through trees. The living power of these elements is
reflected in the Nuvis’ design.
“Our goal was to create a living machine, constantly moving, that
the driver and passengers could be part of,” said John Krsteski,
Hyundai Design manager. “There are no lines on or in this car that
are standing still.”
In addition to invoking the impression of irrepressible motion, the
Hyundai design team took more practical matters into account as
well. Nuvis is designed to accommodate the diverse interests of a
modern, active couple. The Nuvis is meant to be comfortable starting
its day at a desert retreat, arriving at the ski slopes in the
afternoon and then cruising to a formal dinner that evening.
The design team sought to create a vehicle that would complement its
environment, without making a negative impact. The versatility of
the vehicle’s design, combined with Hyundai’s Hybrid Blue Drive
technology, accomplishes exactly this.
The Nuvis has an
assertive face demonstrated by the strong, hour-glass shape that
frames the blue acrylic shield grille and aggressive headlamps,
whose two glowing white rings are offset by a pair of red rings on
the tail lights.
Perched on top of 22-inch wheels, Nuvis’ proportions are tall,
strong and protective. The two body-side lines set up a flowing
water effect, giving the appearance of motion.
In addition to the dynamic angles and firm stance, the Nuvis boasts
a host of unique exterior elements.
“One of the coolest attributes of Nuvis is that the protective roof
appears to float on top of the body through the use of hidden
pillars and high-contrast glass,” said Andre Hudson, Hyundai senior
designer. “This effect starts at the headlamps and is carried all
the way through to the taillights producing a tall, strong body-side
Large, gull-wing doors, either opened or closed, create unique
front, rear and profile views. Blue ambient lighting cast across the
body adds to the overall upscale feel of the vehicle.
An additional design element featured on the Nuvis is a brushed
aluminum accent that spans the entire length of the vehicle.
Normally, this type of trim is only found around the windows. On the
Nuvis, this trim extends out from the headlamps, juts up along the
hood and through the beltline, across the top and into the rear
In keeping with the
exterior design scheme, the Nuvis’ spacious and luxurious interior
is dominated by a cool, blue acrylic center stack that ebbs and
surges in the manner of a river. The cascading floor, with its blue
ambient lighting, further enhances an environment in which seamless
technology flows, enveloping both the driver and passengers.
A current of information coming from the instrument panel streams
throughout the cockpit, as passengers are able to access each other
via Methode Electronics TouchSense® technology that links all four
business-class seats. The car’s infotainment system is fed by
channels from the outside – the occupants, for instance, can learn
of a restaurant’s specials that evening as they drive past it.
The sculptured, comfortable seats are custom woven with a graduated
fabric that is finished in a silver-to-black sunburst. The
ecologically friendly seating fabric is provided by True Textiles,
the industry’s leading provider of environmentally responsible
textile solutions. The Nuvis fabric is made from 100 percent
post-consumer recycled polyester – reclaimed soda bottles – and
increasingly sustainable manufacturing processes. Hyundai
collaborated with True Creative to produce this unique fabric with
an 80-inch repeat, providing a fabric that is as attractive to the
environment as it is to the viewer. The matching seatbelts are
provided by Harveys Original Seatbeltbags, a well- known
manufacturer of handbags made out of seatbelt. Harveys also
developed two matching handbags for the Nuvis concept.
In the rear, a high trunk floor houses the Nuvis’ lithium polymer
HYUNDAI’S HYBRID BLUE DRIVE
homegrown Hybrid Blue Drive architecture helps define the Nuvis
concept. Hyundai’s proprietary parallel hybrid drive system mates
the already-fuel efficient 2.4-liter Theta II engine to a 6-speed
automatic transmission and a 30kW (205 N-m) electric motor for
maximum fuel economy.
Hybrid Blue Drive has an all-electric mode and a parallel drive
mode, meaning that the wheels are turned by power coming directly
from the gasoline engine, or the electric motor, or both together,
as conditions demand. This parallel hybrid drive architecture will
serve as the foundation for future Hyundai hybrid drive vehicles,
starting with the next-generation Sonata in the United States.
To maximize fuel economy, all of the Theta II’s major driveline and
cooling system components have been optimized to reduce friction,
while the crankcase has been filled with low friction oil.
Engine management software automatically shuts off the engine when
the vehicle comes to a halt, cutting emissions to zero. The engine
automatically restarts when pressure is reapplied to the accelerator
pedal due to the Integrated Starter Generator (ISG).
To further reduce fuel consumption, the Theta II’s engine management
software, which governs injection pressure, engine cycle timing and
exhaust retreatment rates, has been revised. This control strategy
assures that maximum efficiency is achieved during gentle
acceleration, while greater power is immediately available during
During deceleration, regenerative braking also comes into play to
help conserve energy.
To ensure that the engine runs at lower RPMs, the top three gear
ratios in the transmission have been extended. Fuel economy is
further optimized through the latest electric motor-assisted
steering system which reduces power drain and low resistance tires.
The nine major components of Hyundai’s Hybrid Blue Drive include:
1. An efficient 30kW
electric motor, delivering 205 N-m of torque
2. A regenerative braking system
3. An integrated starter generator that enables the engine to
turn off at stops and restart automatically under acceleration
4. A breakthrough lithium polymer battery package, with 5.3 Ah
of capacity at 270 volts
5. Optimized Theta II 2.4-liter engine
6. 6-speed automatic transmission with an improved-efficiency
electric oil pump
7. Weight-efficient architecture coupled with a low drag
8. Electric air conditioning compressor
9. Hybrid power control unit
LITHIUM POLYMER BATTERY TECHNOLOGY
Hyundai’s hybrid system
stores its electrical charge in a 270V lithium polymer rechargeable
battery (5.3Ah/270V) that surpasses both existing nickel-metal
hydride and pending lithium-ion applications. Lithium polymer
batteries are more durable and space-efficient than other, bulkier