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QarmaQ Concept
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  Hyundai QarmaQ Concept

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Country of origin:South Korea
Produced in:2007
Introduced at:2007 Geneva Motor Show
Source:Company press release
Last updated:March 19, 2007
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Click here to download printer friendly versionHyundai has unveiled a revolutionary concept CUV (Crossover Utility Vehicle) that squarely addresses pedestrian safety and green issues associated with SUVs in general. Unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show 2007, QarmaQ (pronounced Karma-Q) is the product of Hyundai Motor Europe's Design and Technical Centre in collaboration with GE Plastics.

The crossover vehicle has just two doors, seriously high ground clearance, and is almost completely recyclable, very light in weight and traffic-stopping in styling. QarmaQ tackles pedestrian safety head-on with its unique Elastic Front. More correctly an advanced technology development vehicle (ATDV), QarmaQ uses high-performance composites and thermoplastics extensively to replace components traditionally made from metal, glass, and thermosets. As well as the Elastic Front, they appear in the exterior, interior, lighting systems and under the hood. The Elastic Front requires no airbags or mechanical pop-up hydraulics; it uses the inherent properties of plastic materials.

Energy-absorbing structures and the natural properties of the plastics are seamlessly integrated into the futuristic styling of the vehicle. Different impact zones on the car correlate to the various areas of a pedestrian's body likely to be contacted in a collision. Among the benefits is a weight reduction of up to 60kg that can offer an average fuel savings of up to 80 litres/year, plus the ability to create complex 3D shapes. Components are derived from 85 percent post-consumer plastic waste, a QarmaQ helping to divert close to 900 PET plastic bottles from potential landfill.

Paint-free solutions used for the vehicle's exterior and interior help to reduce volatile emissions given off during traditional painting operations; colour is moulded in a special resin that enables thinner wire and cable coatings that help reduce vehicle weight and allow more electronics in the same space. Among GE Plastics' most interesting contributions is the glazing technology that replaces window and windshield glass with a polycarbonate resin, allowing a panoramic wrap-around greenhouse that reaches down into the door in a C-shape arrangement, helicopter-style. To resist scratching, a very thin layer of glass is actually integrated onto the element. The technology is said to cut weight in half compared with standard glass.

"At Hyundai, we believe in innovation for humanity, and QarmaQ demonstrates our commitment to safety innovation and our determination to bring more environmentally responsible technologies to the market," said Dr. Kwon Moon-Shik, Hyundai Motor's vice president of advanced technology. "We chose to partner with GE Plastics because of their commitment to the environment and their wide range of innovative materials and technical capabilities. "Technologies from QarmaQ will provide Hyundai owners with a safer, more environmentally responsible car and a better driving experience," Dr. Kwon continued.

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  Article Image gallery (11) Specifications