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Hyundai Mobis introduces foldable steering wheel

Posted October. 12, 2021 07:18,   

Updated October. 12, 2021 07:18


Hyundai Mobis has developed a foldable steering system that allows the steering wheel to be folded inside the dashboard when not in use.

The auto parts manufacturer said on Monday that it has developed foldable steering system technology that enables a steering wheel to be moved up to 25 centimeters back and forth. The technology prevents a steering wheel from taking up space while in autonomous driving mode and allows it to be pulled back again while driving. Hyundai Mobis has developed the technology after a two-year development process, and is currently filing patents globally for the technology. No other auto parts manufacturer in the industry has yet mass produced a foldable steering wheel.

The technology is optimized for the future mobility market, where autonomous driving technology will be further advanced. It not only gives the driver more space, but also create a meeting room-like environment by rotating the driver’s seat 180 degrees towards the back seats. The new steering wheel features two stick-shaped handles instead of the typical circular rim. After the steering wheel is folded like a round shelf, it stands vertically with the handles unfolded to the sides for steering.

The new steering system is also compatible with the Steer by Wire (SBW) system. It automatically adjusts a steering wheel’s responsiveness depending on driving conditions to increase stability, and reduces vibration transferred to the steering wheel when passing through bumps by eliminating mechanical connections. In addition, a double safety system is applied to the key components including electronic control unit (ECU) and sensors so that normal steering is possible in case of a problem with some devices.

Hyundai Mobis is speeding up efforts to develop parts for future mobility vehicles, including a “movable steering wheel,” which allows the driver to move a steering wheel to the passenger seat and “PHOBILITY” for the use of voice recognition by docking the smartphone on the steering wheel.

Dong-Jin Shin shine@donga.com