Hyundai Mobis has developed ‘lighting grille’ technology, which implements an LED lighting function in the front grille of the car.

This, the supplier said, “helps determines the first impression, and also integrate the other new ‘grille integral active air flap’ technology, innovations which have not yet been mass-produced worldwide. They are rated as the outcomes of differentiated R&D efforts in response to the trending change for electric vehicles and autonomous vehicles”.

The core of the new grille technology consists of the ‘lighting grille’ and the ‘moving grille’.

Over the years, the automotive grille has been regarded as a vent for cooling the engine and as a design element that determines the first impression of the vehicle. However, as electric vehicles have been becoming more popular in recent years, the existing grille is being transformed to have different uses including lighting systems, sound systems and displays.

The ‘lighting grille’ is a technology that can use the entire front grille of the car as a lighting device. It is characterised by being able to implement various scenarios such as the autonomous driving mode, the EV charging mode, the welcome light function, the sound beat display, and an emergency warning light display.

The ‘lighting grille’ can be used as a means of communicating with other vehicles or pedestrians and it can also create strong and unique design effects depending on how the lighting patterns are applied.

Hyundai Mobis completed development of the technology earlier this year and is now verifying its reliability for commercialisation. It is likely to appear on production vehicles from about 2023.

The ‘moving grille’ technology automatically controls the outside air to cool the engine as the grille moves and provides lighting functions as well.

Unlike the existing method (built-in), as this has been developed as a grille integral type (external), it is expected to improve fuel efficiency and reduce exhaust emissions.

The built-in air flap, located inside the grille, detects changes in the temperature of the coolant and blocks the inflow of outside air by lowering the flap if cooling is not necessary.

Hyundai Mobis previously developed a virtual engine sound system using the automotive grille. It can be used for virtual engine sound, turn signal sound, electric vehicle charging alarm sound, and for playing music while camping.