As reported in May, Honda planned to officially reveal its newest personal mobility device in early June. Staying true to the plan, Honda featured the “Uni-Cub” over the weekend of June 16th-17th in Tokyo where a representative from Japan’s National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation took the Uni-Cub through a 10-minute demonstration for the crowd.
During the presentation, Honda explained that what makes the Uni-Cub so unique is its Omni Traction Drive System which allows users to experience a smooth ride by simply leaning in one direction or another. It can reach speeds of 3.7mile per hour and the lithium-ion-powered battery lasts for about an hour straight at that pace.
“This UNI-CUB sets your hands free while you’re riding on it and you can always put down your feet to feel safe,” said Kenichi Sueda, Honda’s chief engineer. ”Moreover, it offsets shocks when you bump an obstacle or people in crowded places.”
Additionally, Honda has created a mobile app which can rotate the Uni-Cub on the spot as well as retrieve it from across the room.
Reviews are still coming in and have been mixed. While many see the device as a huge improvement for those with disabilities, another way of thinking contends that the Uni-Cub and similar devices will only further the fight against obesity plaguing countries worldwide. Regardless of perspectives, however, the Uni-Cub is certainly an advance in technology and personal mobility access.
While Honda has still not committed to a production date, they have promised that the Uni-Cub will be available for public test drives in Spring 2013.