Will Honda's bizarre electric unicycle change personal transport?
Honda has created an electric personal mobility device that it calls the "Segway of unicycles," and that could change the way we get about. While making us all look a bit stupid.
Called the U3-X, it balances itself and has a pad for each cheek, so at least it's comfortable, especially for those with an asymmetrical bum.
It's been knocking about Honda's R&D HQ for a little while now, but it's about to make it's European debut at the Museum of Architecture and Heritage in Paris.
The self-balancing electric unicycle doesn't require any pedalling. Instead, it uses a lithium ion battery that lasts for about an hour before going flat. The whole thing weighs in at 10kg (22lbs), which Honda reckons make it "a very practical and easy-to-carry device."
Honda calls the method it uses to move 'Honda Omni Traction (HOT), which it says allows the U3-X to "move freely and smoothly in all directions."
That's because, contrary to its looks, it doesn't actually use a single wheel at the bottom, but several small wheels in series, which rotate independently and allow the thing to go forward, backward or diagonally depending on which way the driver leans.
Honda says it still hasn't decided whether to put the U3-X on sale. Would you use one?