2022.10.05 Hyundai Motor Company

Innovative Mobility Experience with Harmony of Light: IONIQ 6

Hyundai Motor Company
Hyundai’s IONIQ 6 presents a more advanced electrified mobility experience with colorful lights. The developers of these lighting technologies tell us how the IONIQ 6 interacts with the driver.

The IONIQ 6, the second model created by the Hyundai IONIQ brand, was released on the 15th. The IONIQ 6, a new dedicated electric vehicle of the IONIQ brand that is accelerating the transition to electrification, is enough to captivate us with its unique streamlined design and innovative interior space. However, the true charm of the IONIQ 6 lies in the entire process of moving, from boarding to disembarking the vehicle; and the innovative mobility experience comes from lighting technology that communicates and interacts with the driver.

Senior researcher Kang Ki‒dong, senior researcher Oh Jun‒geun, senior researcher Kim Kyu‒rok, senior researcher Lee Gyong‒chan (from left), who developed mood lamp technology for IONIQ 6

The welcome lighting greets the driver as soon as they get into the vehicle, and the dual‒color ambient mood lamp soothes the occupants with emotional lighting technology ‒ all this interacts and reacts with the driver through lighting technology. Developers of this lighting technology ‒ Lee Gyong‒chan, senior researcher at Hyundai Interior Design Team 1; Kang Ki‒dong, senior researcher at Product UX Development Team; Bang Jun‒ho, senior researcher at Passenger Safety System Design Team; and senior researcher Kim Kyu‒rok and researcher Oh Jun‒geun at Cockpit Design Team ‒ explains this emotional charm of light.

Q. The various colors of the mood lamp used in the interior space of IONIQ 6 stand out. Please explain the theme of the interior space and the reason for using the mood lamp.

From the beginning of development, the cabin of IONIQ 6 has been gradually developed under the concept of ‘Living Space.’ Breaking away from the stereotype of a cockpit as a general means of transportation, we tried to create a living space where customers can relax and live. So, we were inspired by the characteristics of an actual living space where the atmosphere of day and night changes dramatically, and we focused on creating an emotional interior atmosphere by directing various types of light.

The interior of IONIQ 6 embodies the concept of ‘living space’ with beautiful light production
Senior Researcher Lee Gyong‒chan, who was in charge of the interior design of the IONIQ 6, said that this houses delicate design elements to maximize the effect of the mood lamp

The interior of the IONIQ 6 is a comfortable personal studio concept, enabling personalization and communication with the driver. To this end, Hyundai Motor’s design team carefully considered how lighting can transform a space and how it can aesthetically convey a variety of information. The cabin of the IONIQ 6 is housed with various details to maximize the effect of the mood lamp ‒ such as the door trim with a wave pattern that naturally spreads light, or the translucent material that allows light to pass through smoothly.

IONIQ 6 mood lamps with separate hues for the top and bottom of the door trim

Q. How is the mood lamp of IONIQ 6 composed?

The mood lamp of IONIQ 6 is widely applied throughout the interior. First of all, a clear line light is installed on the easily noticeable crash pad garnish, and the mood light spreads softly on the top and bottom of each door. What’s unique is that you can set the lighting color for the top and bottom of the door trim separately. There are 64 color options for each area, and a total of 4,096 combinations of top and bottom lighting. In addition, the interactive LED light in the crash pad garnish uses 32 smart LEDs to implement various lighting movements. Each LED is designed to emit light according to various preset scenarios, featuring fast and flexible light movement.

Q. Why did you use the emotional lighting function for each theme?

While current mood lamps simply focus on lighting areas or colors, the mood lamps of IONIQ 6 are designed to enable active mood changes with various functions according to the driver’s needs. This is a characteristic of the cabin of the IONIQ 6 that has been refined to provide a personal haven, and it is derived from the concept of ‘living space’ mentioned above.

Dual color emotional lighting theme provides an emotional mobility experience unique to electric vehicles
Senior Researcher Kang Ki‒dong explained that color combinations for each theme can soothe the occupants

The mood lamp of IONIQ 6 can set different colors for the upper and lower areas, and based on this, the dual color emotional lighting theme provides the emotional mobility experience of a dedicated EV. There are a total of 6 themes: Concentration, Healing Forest, Wonderful Day, Mind Care, Meditation, and Creative Moment. These beautiful combinations can help create an emotional atmosphere and soothe the occupants.

The dual color emotional lighting theme of IONIQ 6 was developed in collaboration with color experts

Q. What function does each color combination of each theme have?

The biggest feature of the dual‒color emotional lighting theme is that the mood lighting color combination with different top and bottom colors can calm passengers. Developers have recently developed a dual‒color emotional lighting theme in consideration of color therapy, which treats certain mental and physical health conditions through the color of lighting, and interior trends that determine lighting colors according to the use of space. The six themes offered by the mood lamp were developed through research on changes in biosignals ‒ brain waves and electrocardiograms ‒ for color combination lighting stimulation with color experts.

The Concentration theme, which combines blue and green, improves concentration, and the Healing Forest, which is a combination of yellow and green, provides a sense of stability for relaxation. Wonderful Day in red and gold helps boost vitality, and Mind Care with pink and violet helps relieve anxiety and reduce stress. The royal blue and blue colors of Meditation provide a meditative atmosphere through high awareness and clarity, and the Creative Moment of the turquoise and green combination elevates our inspiration.

Interactive LED lights intuitively express vehicle status and information through various animations

Q. Does the IONIQ 6 have a lighting function to communicate with the driver?

The mood lamp, which communicates with the driver through various reactions, is one of the signature lighting technologies of IONIQ 6. First of all, the interactive LED light on the crash pad features a sequential lighting effect that current mood lighting does not have. It features animations for various scenarios for communication with drivers, such as Welcome, Goodbye, EV Ready, and voice recognition 3‒level sequential lighting function. For example, if the driver gets into the vehicle, the long mood lamp is turned on in sequence to greet the driver as if the vehicle woke up from sleep. When the driver uses voice recognition, the length of the mood lighting is changed according to the driver’s voice volume to clearly convey that the vehicle is recognizing the voice. In addition, the interactive LED light intuitively informs the driving status of the EV. In the EV Ready state, the LEDs turn on sequentially from the center to the left and right, and in the non‒driving state (when the motor is off), the interactive LED lights operate in the opposite direction. This helps the deaf or prevents misoperation.

The mood lamp of IONIQ 6 also housed a speed link function that changes the brightness according to the speed of the vehicle. When this function is activated, the mood lamp becomes brighter as the vehicle speed increases, providing a dramatic mood change as well as visually conveying a sense of speed to the driver. In particular, speed‒linked interior lighting is expected to be highly useful in EVs, where it is difficult to recognize a sense of speed due to relatively low driving noise. From zero to 30 km/h, it emits 10% brightness of mood lighting, gradually brightens from 30 km to 100 km/h, and features full brightness at speeds above 100 km/h. Also, since speed is driver‒centric information, this function does not apply to rear‒seat passengers.

Senior Researcher Kim Kyu‒rok said that the vehicle’s sense of speed was visually expressed through the mood lamp linked to the speed
Four pixel lights in the center of the steering wheel instead of the brand emblem provide vehicle status information with various lighting functions

Q. The pixel light in the center of the steering wheel is eye‒catching. Why did you remove the brand emblem from it?

Instead of a typical emblem, the IONIQ 6 houses Hyundai’s new dot‒type LEDs in the center of the steering wheel. The pixel light, visible from the driver’s seat, is a symbolic interior element of the IONIQ lineup, and it incorporates lighting technology that matches the IONIQ brand’s goal of ‘advanced electrified experiences.’ Pixel light composed of 4 LEDs stands for the letter ‘H’ in Morse code. In addition, various lighting functions communicate emotionally with the driver.

The IONIQ 6’s Pixel Light operates in seven different conditions: Welcome, Goodbye, EV Ready, Voice Recognition Indicator, Drive Mode Switch Indicator, Battery Charge Status Indicator, and Reverse Status Indicator. For example, with the Voice Recognition Indicator on, the system displays the charging status and remaining battery power through LED lighting when the vehicle is charging. As such, the pixel light can provide various functions that the current brand emblem could not, and has evolved into an emotional communication method that connects the vehicle and the driver.

Q. Lastly, what is the charm of IONIQ 6 that you want to emphasize as a lighting technology developer?

IONIQ 6 offers a new way to communicate with the car through various technologies. And its lighting technology, including mood lamps, is playing a huge role as it provides a new mobility experience. The mood lamp of IONIQ 6 goes beyond simply aesthetic purposes, and considers customers to enjoy a safer and more convenient vehicle. We hope that many will experience the charm of beautiful lighting of the comfortable and stylish cabin of IONIQ 6.

Photography by Choi Min‒seok

HMG Journal Operation Team


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