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Hyundai's Elevate concept can climb a five-foot wall

Don't try that with your Elantra.

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Andrew Krok
Hyundai Elevate Concept
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Hyundai Elevate Concept
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3 of 22 Angela Lang/CNET

Hyundai used CES 2019 as the backdrop to debut its Elevate walking car concept.    

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4 of 22 Angela Lang/CNET

According to Hyundai, the Elevate is capable of driving at highway speeds, but it can also allegedly climb a 5-foot wall, step over a 5-foot gap and have a track width up to 15 feet.      

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While it's primarily designed to give first responders an additional edge in rescuing people, it can also be used to enhance mobility options for all sorts of citizens.     

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6 of 22 Angela Lang/CNET

So, it's basically an AT-AT from Star Wars that has, as Hyundai puts it, "both mammalian and reptilian walking gaits."       

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7 of 22 Angela Lang/CNET

The concept was born out of Hyundai's CRADLE robotics and artificial intelligence investment division.

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While it does have traditional wheels on each corner, they're connected to the vehicle by way of mechanical "legs."     

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9 of 22 Angela Lang/CNET

For now, the automaker is exploring the wheel-leg hybrid at the 1/8th scale.

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10 of 22 Angela Lang/CNET

Each leg features 5 points of articulation and a wheel at the end with an in-wheel motor.

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Those legs have multiple axes of articulation.

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Since the electric motors that power the concept are in the wheels themselves, there are no powertrain linkages complicating matters.

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13 of 22 Angela Lang/CNET

The combination allows a variety of locomotion methods -- from rolling modes to walking or even running over rough terrain.

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The pictures make it pretty obvious how this car gained the ability to move less like a vehicle and more like a creepy robot animal.    

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It's wild.   

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16 of 22 Angela Lang/CNET
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