Pursuing the concept of “harmony with people” Honda has developed a new personal mobility technology and unveiled U3-X, a compact experimental device that fits comfortably between the rider’s legs, to provide free movement in all directions just as in human walking – forward, backward, side-to-side, and diagonally. Honda will continue research and development of the device including experiments in a real-world environment to verify the practicality of the device.
This new personal mobility device makes it possible to adjust speed and move, turn and stop in all directions when the rider leans the upper body to shift body weight. This was achieved through application of advanced technologies including Honda’s balance control technology, which was developed through the robotics research of ASIMO, Honda’s bipedal humanoid robot, and the world’s first* omni-directional driving wheel system (Honda Omni Traction Drive System, or HOT Drive System), which enables movement in all directions, including not only forward and backward, but also directly to the right and left and diagonally. In addition, this compact size and one-wheel-drive personal mobility device was designed to be friendly to the user and people around it by making it easier for the rider to reach the ground from the footrest and placing the rider on roughly the same eye level as other people or pedestrians.
Honda is planning to showcase the U3-X at the 41st Tokyo Motor Show 2009 (sponsored by JAMA) which will begin on October 24, 2009 at Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Japan.
Striving to propose the next-generation mobility which expands the joy and fun of mobility, Honda has been conducting robotics research since 1986, including ASIMO, walking assist devices and U3-X, at the Honda R&D Co., Ltd. Fundamental Technology Research Center in Wako, Saitama, Japan.
Key features of U3-X
Key specifications of the experimental model:
Length×Width×Height(mm) - 315×160×650
Weight - less than 10kg
Battery Type - Lithium ion battery
Operation time (with fully charged battery) - 1 hour
Photos and video available at:
Honda’s multimedia newsroom for journalists – http://www.hondanews.com
Honda’s YouTube Channel – http://www.youtube.com/honda
Honda’s Flickr photostream – http://www.flickr.com/hondanews
Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available: http://www.businesswire.com/cgi-bin/mmg.cgi?eid=6056801&lang=en.
* Based on Honda’s internal research