Toyota i-Road public trials begin

The future of urban transport moved a step closer this week as consumer trials of our electric three-wheeled Toyota i-ROAD began in Tokyo.

Weighing a featherlight 300kg and just a slender 90cm wide, the Personal Mobility Vehicle (PMV) has been designed to offer us more freedom getting around our cities, while reducing congestion and harmful emissions.

Ten of our compact i-ROADS will hit the streets of greater Tokyo area from 24th March to early June to gauge the effectiveness of the electric vehicles in everyday situations.

Around 20 lucky test participants, including members of the public and industry experts, will have a chance to get behind the wheel of our unique leaning PMV. Taking up the road space of a motorbike, but with the benefit of car-like stability and a closed cockpit, the participants can stay dry while enjoying all the creature comforts they are used to in a car.

Being a development of the i-ROAD concept shown at the 83rd Geneva Motor Show 2013, these new vehicles have been refined so they are easier to use and benefit from improved visibility and manoeuvrability, and come in five eye-catching colours.

During the trial, feedback will be collected from the participants on how i-ROAD felt to drive, how easy it was to use in the city and what impact it had on the type of journeys they made.

This is just the beginning of our real-world research and development into PMV’s, as feedback from this trial is collated with those from the i-ROAD public trials in Toyota City as part of “HA:MO”, our low carbon urban traffic system.

With residents of Grenoble in France lucky enough to try our i-ROAD at the end of 2014, thanks to another vehicle-sharing project that will run until 2017, the future of urban mobility is looking bright.

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