Published On: Thu, Feb 11th, 2021

Hyundai’s Tiger X-1 Is a Walking Autonomous Car

It looks kind of like the Mars Rover.

The Hyundai Tiger X-1

The Hyundai Tiger X-1 is a new kind of self-driving car. But don’t look for it in a showroom any time soon. It is not like automated cars which do the driving for you.

TIGER stands for Transforming Intelligent Ground Excursion Robot. This is the company’s second Ultimate Mobility Vehicle (UMV) and the first designed to be uncrewed. The transforming intelligent ground excursion robot is designed to carry various types of payload while traveling over challenging terrain.

TIGER is being developed by Hyundai Motor Group’s New Horizons Studio, headquartered in Mountain View, California. The studio was established in late 2020 to develop UMVs drawing on research and innovation leadership from Silicon Valley and other innovation hubs.

If it looks like something out of a sci-fi movie or a device made by NASA to probe the surface of Mars there is a reason for that. It’s because it does.

The Hyundai Tiger X-1 in Action

“Vehicles like Tiger, and the technologies underpinning it, give us an opportunity to push our imaginations,” said Dr. John Suh, head of the New Horizons Studio. “We are constantly looking at ways to rethink vehicle design and development and redefine the future of transportation and mobility.”


Have you seen all those lazy people going around town on electric go carts or those three wheeled chairs? Well know they could soon have something like that, but for hiking. Or maybe handicapped people will someday be able to use it to climb mountains.

TIGER is designed to function as a mobile scientific exploration platform in extreme, remote locations. Based on a modular platform architecture, Hyundai boasts that its features include a “sophisticated leg and wheel locomotion system, 360-degree directional control, and a range of sensors for remote observation.” It is also intended to connect to unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), which can fully charge and deliver TIGER to inaccessible locations.

“While developing TIGER with New Horizons Studio, the team at Sundberg-Ferar was looking to create a robot that maximized the efficiency of wheeled motion with the articulation of a quadruped to expand the possibility of reaching more remote locations,” said David Byron, Manager of Design and Innovation Strategy at Sundberg-Ferar. “TIGER is a modular platform design allowing different bodies to be attached to the chassis for unique applications such as cargo delivery or surveillance in locations not suitable for humans.”

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