Every automaker with an environmentally efficient vehicle was showcasing it at this year’s Smart Mobility City exhibition space, a new initiative occupying two halls adjacent to an outdoor parking area that was used for test drives of production vehicles in the category.
Besides the Kobots (see previous post here) GM was showing the Chevrolet EN-V, Toyota has a static display of the i-Real and there were numerous hybrids, plug-in hybrids, fuel cell and electric vehicles on show in the two-hall exhibition space.
The exhibition was open to a broad range of industrial sectors, some showcasing new social infrastructure system that supports smart cities and others displaying technology systems and how they relate to the future of automobiles, people and cities.
These three personal mobility concepts, hailing from new environmentally efficient company Kowa tmsuk, were on show in the Smart Mobility City section of the Tokyo motor show.
Kowa tmsuk, which is developing vehicles under the Kobot brand, is a rather unlikely source for a new car company: the brand actually stems from a partnership between Kowa, a pharmaceuticals and electro-optronics company, and a robotics company tmsuk, creators of service robots such as the telerobotic shopper and the Showa Hanako 2 robotic dental patient.
The urban-centric electric vehicles developed under the new partnership include two single passenger personal mobility vehicles called the Kobot V (red) and the Kobot β (green) and the Renault Twizy-like two-passenger Kobot ∏. According to the Japanese company, the Kobots are ‘ultra small and ultra agile vehicles embodying the design full of playful spirit’. The V and β′s telescopic foldable structure shortens the vehicle’s wheelbase to save space when parked.