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Hyundai HCD-14 Concept Previews Enhanced 3-D Gesture Control

Sections: Car Safety, Infotainment

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A teaser photo of the Hyundai HCD-14 Concept Car to be revealed at NAIAS

Hyundai released this teaser photo of the HCD-14 concept car to be revealed at the North American International Auto Show this week. The sleek shape may or may not get your blood pumping, but if you’re into in-car technology enough to be reading In-Car Tech Tell, you should probably be excited by the 3-D gesture-based controls for its infotainment and HVAC systems. (Photo courtesy Hyundai.)

Hyundai will unveil the HCD-14 concept car at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) Monday, Jan. 14. That may or may not excite you, but the concept has a feature you ought to be excited about: 3-D gesture-based controls for the infotainment and HVAC systems.

According to a Hyundai press brief, the HCD-14 will provide a glimpse into the future of Hyundai premium vehicle design, spirited driving dynamics, and 3-D gesture-based technology controls. Its unveil is planned for 3 p.m. Monday.

Hyundai Senior Manager of Midwest Public Relations Miles Johnson said the 3-D gesture-controlled systems were previewed at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) last week. Our Terry A. Miller made sure to visit the Hyundai booth while he was at CES, but was unable to take the technology for a spin, so Johnson was nice enough to give us this breakdown:

Hyundai plans to introduce a sleek concept car that incorporates “3-D gesture” control so a driver can operate an audio system with the wave of a hand

The goal: Make it “safe and easy to use,” says Mitchell Zarders, a Hyundai senior engineer, who notes the functionality is still in its infancy. “You are going to be amazed in a couple years. (Gesture control) isn’t going to resemble anything that you see today.”

With that goal in mind, Hyundai demonstrated its “3-D gesture” system, a version of which will appear on the HCD-14 concept vehicle next week.

The system shown at CES allows users to control air conditioning settings or displays on the instrument clusters with an open palm hovering in the air. For the air conditioning, a pushing motion takes the driver through different choices for fan settings, as seen on the console screen.

The HCD-14 will have a more sophisticated setup. It will work in a similar way, but allow for control of more functions and can be used in conjunction with a heads-up display so the driver doesn’t have to look down at a dashboard. Settings, as chosen with hand gesture, appear to float above the dashboard.

The system is “much easier than reaching all the way across, taking your eye off the road,” Zarders says.

You might think of it as swiping the screen of your infotainment system, only without actually having to swipe the screen of your infotainment system. While we’re sure there will be teething pains with this technology, as with most others (MyFord Touch, anyone?) it sounds like something that could revolutionize the way we control the various electronic systems in our cars. We here at In-Car Tech Tell look forward to trying it out ourselves.

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