Toyota unveils next-generation scooter

Toyota unveils next-generation scooter

TOKYO —

Toyota Motor on Friday unveiled the Winglet—a new two-wheel electric scooter to rival the Segway. The Winglet, which the automaker describes as “a personal transport assistance robot,” can be controlled by shifting body weight, allowing the rider to go forward, backward and turn while standing upright.

It cruises at a speed of up to six kilometers per hour and comes in three sizes. Toyota plans to start practical tests of Winglet later this year at an airport in central Nagoya city and a shopping mall in Yokohama, the company said.

AFP

  • 0

    Speed

    Why would the Winglet be okay but not the Segway? It seems to operate the same way, but it's just smaller and without handles. If it's banned for pedestrian use like the Segway was, then it's doomed to be a commercial failure.

  • 0

    PepinGalarga

    having the hands free opens up the device for many new uses, however, even the slight bump will result in the passenger flying a few feet...

  • 0

    okapake

    Hands free so the folks can use their ketai like they do in cars!

  • 0

    Sarge

    That's not going to rival the Segway.

  • 0

    Mex

    Yes! hands free! so, the folks also can eat "onigiri" and whatch T.V, and kill, like usually do! and after declear "mental incopetence" and walk free tooo! good invention...!and be carefull with the nife wielding high school students! firt of all they have to do something with the general education in Japan.

  • 0

    thepro

    Does the segway need a rival? I've never seen anybody ride one. And nobody will feel comfortable on something with no handles.

  • 0

    seeker1

    thpro, as Speed mentioned above, it's illegal to ride a Segway in Japan. That's why you haven't seen one. I'm sure Toyota will get the OK though, since they are Toyota...

  • 0

    thepro

    Do people ride them in America? Looks kind of embarrassing.

  • 0

    rajakumar

    Good toyota japan job.

  • 0

    helloklitty

    You can ride Segways in Sasebo, Nagasaki at the Dutch theme park.

  • 0

    jonobugs

    Ugh...what ever happened to just walking? I can walk faster than 6km/hour, so it can't be for the speed. If someone is incapable of walking then there are other machines available that allow them to sit more comfortably. I've seen the other machines send the passengers flying when it's steered just a bit off. Seems kind of unstable and dangerous.

    Seems like a 'fun' novelty item but I'm not sure how practical it is.

  • 0

    teaabe

    in desperation over fuel prices, this is your future commute people!

  • 0

    kenchan

    designed for all the obese lazy people out there....self destruction to the max!

  • 0

    gokai_wo_maneku

    I wonder if it could actually balance with those obese lazy people standing on it. Well, they won't put up with standing anyway.

  • 0

    Freespeech

    Just as indispensible an object as the Honda humanoid robots !

  • 0

    bebert

    designed for all the obese lazy people out there

    The obese and the drunk prefer the 3-wheel electric scooters you can sit down on. Supposedly, these things are supposed to help the elderly, but if President Bush did a header on a Segeway, I don't see how a geriatric will do much better on one of these. Better to ration 3-wheel scooters to the elderly and ban their use among the obese.

  • 0

    sk4ek

    Toyota itself has said it has no plans to commercialize the technology, this is just a platform for testing various kinds of hardware, including sensors, gyroscopes, steering mechanisms, and robotic functions. In fact, most of the prototype robots and other eye-catching technology rolled out by large companies like Toyota and Honda serve mainly as development platforms and publicity tools--and thus are not really expected to have any great relevance to their possible use in our daily lives.

    People take things too literally around here... :-/

  • 0

    DenshaDeGO

    ... to rival the Segway ...

    Rival the Segway in what, zero sales?

  • 0

    Hughgarse

    what`s wrong with 2 feet and a heartbeat?

  • 0

    presto345

    Superfluous invention. Toyota should put more effort into generating (especially clean) electricity instead of using it.

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