Could fitness monitors in steering wheels radically change how cars are driven?
Revealed at the 2013 Seoul Motor Show, Kia’s CUB Concept is a five door compact vehicle aimed at ‘trend-setting urban dwellers’. President and Chief Design Officer, Peter Schreyer worked with the design staff at the Seoul studio on the project that is kind of styling mashup of their current Rio and GT Concept.
The sporty character of the car is emphasized through the use of long, low shapes. Kia’s signature ‘tiger nose’ grille has been squished to nearly a slot on the front end. The lower front and rear fascia have a matching thin to thick graphic treatment accentuating the vehicle’s width. The lower bodyside incorporates aerodynamic panels similar to the barge boards found on Formula One race cars that help smooth airflow around the vehicle.
The interior is driver focused and controls and fussy details are kept to a minimum. The instrument panel is made up of two large gauges Kia says were ‘inspired by the eyes of a wild animal.’
An interesting technology feature is a sensor strip integrated into the steering wheel which monitors the drivers biorhythms. Kia doesn’t go into any further details about what this might do, but consider if the car could adjust settings to provide a more comfortable ride/interior environment if the drivers heart rate were elevated due to stress.
Kia says there are no plans for production of the CUB but we wouldn’t rule out the next generation Rio incorporating some of these styling elements.