Hyundai and Kia Unveil Revolutionary Snow Chain Technology for Winter Driving

Hyundai Snow Chain Technology
Hyundai and Kia unveil a game-changing snow chain-integrated tire technology / Credit to Hyundai.news

Key Points

  • Hyundai and Kia have developed a snow chain technology integrated into tires, activated with a button press.
  • This innovative system uses shape memory alloy modules for improved grip on snowy roads.
  • The technology is patent-pending and will undergo further testing before potential mass production.

In a groundbreaking move, Hyundai Motor Company and Kia Corporation have announced the development of an innovative snow chain technology integrated directly into tire assemblies. This advanced system, featuring shape memory alloy, promises to revolutionize winter driving, enhancing safety and convenience for drivers in snowy conditions.

The unique technology, still in its patent-pending stage in South Korea and the U.S., involves shape memory alloy modules located within the wheel and tire. These modules are designed to extend and act as snow chains at the simple push of a button. This novel approach to tackling winter driving challenges marks a significant shift from the traditional, often cumbersome process of installing and removing snow chains.

Joon Mo Park, Head of the Advanced Chassis Development Team at Hyundai Motor, emphasized the focus on turning advanced technologies into practical, real-world applications that directly benefit customers. “Our commitment is to develop technologies that not only enhance the safety and convenience of our vehicles but also bring real value to our customers,” Park stated.

Hyundai Snow Chain Technology
The tire in snow chain mode / Credit to Hyundai.news

The snow chain-integrated tire technology includes a wheel and tire assembly with radial grooves, into which the shape memory alloy modules are inserted. Under normal driving conditions, these modules remain compressed inside the wheel, forming an ‘L’ shape that doesn’t contact the road. However, when activated, an electric current triggers the alloy to revert to its original shape, extending the module out of the tire to improve grip and stability on snowy surfaces.

An added safety feature of this technology is its ability to indicate severe tire wear. When the tire surface wears down to the height of the module in normal driving mode, drivers can easily recognize the need for tire replacement, ensuring they don’t miss crucial maintenance cycles.

Hyundai Motor and Kia are considering mass production of this snow chain-integrated tire technology following further development, extensive durability and performance tests, and comprehensive regulation reviews. This innovative solution stands to save time for drivers, who will no longer need to manually load snow chains, and significantly improves safety in sudden, heavy snowfalls.

Hyundai and Kia’s development of the snow chain-integrated tire technology offers a glimpse into the potential future applications of innovative automotive solutions. While still in the testing and regulatory review stages, this technology could provide a practical solution for enhancing safety in winter driving conditions. It reflects an ongoing effort within the automotive industry to address specific driving challenges through technological advancements, emphasizing safety and practicality in real-world scenarios. As the industry continues to evolve, such innovations are likely to play a key role in shaping the future of automotive design and functionality.

 

Source:

Hyundai

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