Hyundai's CES 2017 presser started with a lot of the terminology we expected from an automaker at CES -- connected car, smart home, autonomous vehicle, internet of things -- but then put a rather bizarre twist on these buzzwords. The automaker's Mobility Vision concept doesn't just virtually connect the car to the home with data, it literally joins the mobile and stationary spaces via a hole in a wall.
Here's the vision: When parked, the automaker's so-called "hyper-connected intelligent car," developed in partnership with networking giant Cisco, literally connects to an opening in a wall that matches the shape of the car's door.
While docked with the home, the car is able connect to the home network, physically integrate into the room and fully integrate with the home. The car could share air conditioning duties with the home's central system, act as extra space for sitting, lounging or sleeping, provide emergency power from its hydrogen fuel cell during outages or even physically move its seats into the room space when the owner has guests over.
When it's time to drive, just hop into one of those smart seats, slide into the hyper-connected car and let it take you away.
The house and the car share a digital connection as well, allowing the user to bring elements of the car's infotainment into the home space when parked and maintain a virtual connection to the home network and the cloud while moving. In Hyundai's eyes, the house and the car of the future are two parts of one unit.
As a car guy who has always fantasized about the perfect life/work garage space, this all sounds pretty cool. But I think Hyundai's concept of converging the home, car and garage goes a bit further than my desire to want to turn wrenches in a heated and air conditioned space.
The automaker will be showcasing a working demonstration of this Mobility Vision concept on the floor of CES 2017 this week, where we're hoping to get a more up close look.