On the green i-Road

Is the future of the automobile a fortified motorbike?
Toyota

You’ve probably noticed that your city streets are getting denser, your commute longer and temper shorter. Toyota’s electric i-Road vehicle, with its slim size, reverse-tricycle design and articulated wheels for turning corners, makes it a little easier to maneuver through packed streets. The automaker has also produced an intelligent transport system called Ha:mo, which is linked to the vehicle and provides the fastest way to get from point A to B using a combination of the three-wheelers (there’s a less-cool four-wheeled version as well) and public transport. Imagine being able to step off the train and hop behind the wheel of one of these fully charged wheelies and drop it off at a charging station at your final destination.

Previously trialled in Japan, the service will start operating in Grenoble, France next month. Could it work here? We don’t envision people cruising down Toronto’s King Street using one of these on a Friday night, but Car2Go, Bike Share and Autoshare have already familiarized Canadians with their car and bike-sharing programs. With the added benefit of it being electric (and therefore more environmentally-friendly) as well as having a smart travel system behind it, we can imagine folks falling (or at least leaning) for it.

 

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