Company unveils ‘WheelBot’, an innovative wheel system that embodies future mobility with current technology.

Photo Hankook Tire Unveils Design Innovation 2022 Project 2, Industry Today
  • Company unveils ‘WheelBot’, an innovative wheel system that embodies future mobility with current technology
  • Proposes Space Specific Mobility to change infrastructure and quality of life of future smart cities
  • Continuous research & development for future mobility and concept tires to play specific roles for future spaces

Nashville, Tenn – Leading global tire maker Hankook Tire today unveiled its Design Innovation 2022 project at its Design Innovation Day, the opening event of “2022 MADE IN HANKOOK,” held at the Peaches D8NE cultural complex in Seongsu-dong, Seoul, Korea.

“Design Innovation Project” is Hankook’s research and development program launched in 2012 to propose a vision for smart cities and the changing mobility of the future. Through the Design Innovation Project, Hankook presents mobility solutions equipped with new futuristic concept tires focused on mobility infrastructure systems.

Under the theme of “Urban Reshaping,” Hankook demonstrates how mobility innovation will reconstruct space in future smart cities. Hankook Tire presented Space Shifting Mobility (SSM), the new mobility concept optimized for these environments. Reflecting sustainability trends, the company considered future smart cities that are human-centered and environmentally-friendly as part of this concept.

SSM is a mobility concept that combines Hankook’s innovative sphere wheel system and mini-van-sized POD spaces. It allows three-dimensional movement from roads to inside buildings through installed rails. Moreover, this concept is expected to enable the efficient use of energy by flexibly configuring spaces as needed. SSM can be applied to homes, medical institutions, and even work environments.

This year’s project was carried out in collaboration with robotics startup company Calmantech Corp. Hankook took the project a step further by bringing futuristic mobility ideas to life, successfully building the WheelBot, a modular robotic wheel system with three axles, which appears in the future smart city scenario. Furthermore, Hankook is offering visitors to 2022 MADE IN HANKOOK an opportunity to drive the WheelBot in person.

The Design Innovation 2022 project is the first time that the company has unveiled a tangible product that can be driven. In 2020, Hankook successfully launched animation videos of future mobility scenarios and unveiled prototype mockups in collaboration with the University of Cincinnati. In addition, Hankook has collaborated with the Royal College of Art (RCA) in London, and Pforzheim University in Germany to carry out other concept projects since 2012.

A video showcasing the Design Innovation 2022 project is available on Hankook’s official YouTube channel. It will also be available for visitors to experience during 2022 MADE IN HANKOOK at Peaches D8NE through Oct. 9.

With WheelBot marking its successful debut, Hankook Tire plans to continue conducting research and development in cooperation with companies to make future mobility a reality. Hankook has launched Design Innovation Alliance (DIA), an open innovation platform with companies such as robotics startup company Calmantech and mobility startup company Mobiltech.

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