Honda’s latest attempt at a personal mobility device has just hit the internet. Called the UNI-CUB this so-called vehicle is a development of the Honda UX-3 – itself highly unusual. But at least it didn’t look like a motorized chemical toilet.
The Honda UNI-CUB features the company’s proprietary balance control system and the world’s first omni-directional driving wheel system (Honda Omni Traction Drive System) - inspired by robotic technologies developed for Asimo.
These technologies allow the rider to control speed, move in any direction, turn and stop, all simply by shifting his or her weight. Since the rider can freely move forward, backward, side-to-side and diagonally, Honda say the UNI-CUB can easily manoeuvre among and around other people.
Unlike the UX-3 which features a slick figure-of-8 shape, the Honda UNI-CUB is characterised by its short, squat dimensions. Honda say the new packaging and saddle seating make it easier for the rider’s legs to reach the ground, as well as providing seating which keeps the rider at more or less eye-level with pedestrians.
From June 2012 until March 2013, Honda will jointly conduct demonstration testing of UNI-CUB with Japan’s National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation. Staff will perform demonstrations and use the device for making their rounds, while the museum’s annual pass holders will have the opportunity to test ride the UNI-CUB.
Based on the results Honda will continue their research into next-generation personal mobility vehicles, with the aim of eventually creating a product they can sell commercially.
So there you have it, the office of the future will be filled with
even fatter fat people trundling around on plastic porta-pottys of shame.
Specifications of the Honda UNI-CUB:
Size (L x W x H): 520 x 345 x 745 mm
Seat height: 745 – 825 mm
Battery type: Lithium-ion battery (approx 2 hours to charge from zero voltage at A/C 100-240V)
Maximum speed: 6 km/h
Range: 6 km
Application environment: Barrier-free indoor environments (with gradients of 5 degrees or lower)
Rider weight: Between 40-100kg in weight and 150-190cm in height