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Looks a little RX-8 to me  (Source: Autoblog)

Blue 2 Concept  (Source: Autoblog)

OLED screens replace normal dash  (Source: Autoblog)
Blue 2 offers a vision of the future, while the Sonata Hybrid and Kia Optima Hybrid should hit dealer showrooms within the coming months

Hyundai has unveiled a new concept car at the 2011 Soul Motor Show that is called Blue 2. The car is a mid-size sedan that offers some hints at the future blueprint for mid-size sedans from Hyundai.

The car is a FCEV or a Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle that is powered by hydrogen and is an attempt by Hyundai to capture some leadership for the emerging fuel cell vehicle market. There are some huge hurdles for FCEVs though, namely an infrastructure around the world for producing and distributing hydrogen.

Hyundai notes that the Blue 2 concept has a stack power of 90kW and a fuel economy of 34.9km/L. The car has special low-resistance tires and light alloy wheels to reduce weight and help extend the driving range of the car. The concept has LED screen panels on the exterior of the car that allow the driver to see the vehicles status located on the front and rear. The car also has a welcome system that recognizes the driver and automatically opens the door.

The concept has no side mirrors, using cameras on the sides mounted on the roof allowing the driver to see behind the car. The dash of the car uses OLED panels rather than normal gauges. While Hyundai is showing off its new concept car, a few details on the production hybrids from Hyundai and Kia have surfaced at Wards Auto.

In other Hyundai news, Wards Auto reports that the Hyundai Sonata hybrids have been promised for delivery to the U.S. in later-April. The car has been officially on sale since December of 2010, but few dealers have actually been able to get the cars in stock. Hyundai reports that the delay in delivery was to give the automaker time to remove a switch that was integrated into the vehicles that allowed the driver to disable a warning system that makes noise to alert blind pedestrians.

Wards notes that the car has been criticized by reviewers for having real world fuel economy that is much lower than the published EPA ratings. Hyundai spokesman Jim Trainor says, "The slow rollout has nothing to do with some of the early results that folks got."

“Even with the early prototypes that were making the rounds last fall (in California), many media got well over 40 mpg on the drive,” Trainor says, adding “production units will be better.”

While the Sonata Hybrid is being promised by the end of the month, its kissing cousin --the Kia Optima Hybrid -- has been set to go on sale in the U.S. in Q2 rather than the January 2011 launch that Kia originally planned. 



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RE: Bad Idea.
By AnnihilatorX on 4/1/2011 9:57:01 AM , Rating: 2
A good system will not open the door by force, but just enough to overcome static friction, and drop down to kinetic friction level with a small margin so that a child's finger should be able to stop the door from opening further.


RE: Bad Idea.
By AnnihilatorX on 4/1/2011 9:59:15 AM , Rating: 2
What I said above works but the door open slowly. Won't be too much of a time issue if it opens when you are walking towards it.

Or proximity sensors near the edge can also be installed.


RE: Bad Idea.
By Solandri on 4/1/2011 1:19:21 PM , Rating: 3
Japan has had automatic door openers on their taxis since at least the early 1990s (when I visited). You wave down a cab, the driver drives up, pushes a button, and your door opens automatically.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkGIJzemEWg

So this isn't exactly a something new. The technology for actually opening the door is at least 2 decades old, and the collision problem was probably already solved long ago. All that's new here is the recognizing the owner part.


RE: Bad Idea.
By GulWestfale on 4/1/2011 5:53:12 PM , Rating: 2
ever heard of power windows that automatically stop closing when a finger is inserted in the opening? been around since the early 1990s as well.


RE: Bad Idea.
By Omega215D on 4/1/2011 7:36:10 PM , Rating: 2
Kawasaki developed the new subway trains for NYC and the doors open up if there's something as small as a pen preventing the door from closing fully.

Japan is usually ahead of the curve for such automated things. It's nice to have some of that make their way to the US.


RE: Bad Idea.
By Azethoth on 4/4/2011 4:45:30 PM , Rating: 2
Is anyone working on a system for the car to give you a hand-job? I think it could really reduce road rage...


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