Toyota have unveiled a trio of “Personal Transport Assistants” that, like the Segway, balance on two wheels using internal sensors and gyroscopes to remain upright. The Winglet range consists of the L, M and S versions, the latter two of which don’t have handlebars and instead are gripped by the calves.
Video of the Winglets in action after the cut
Powered by an electric motor, the Winglets are capable of up to 6km/h (3.73mph) for up to 10km (6.2 miles) in the case of the L or M models, or half that in the case of the smaller S version. Control is by leaning in the direction the rider wishes to move, and a full recharge takes an hour.
Toyota are planning to begin consumer testing at the Central Japan International Airport this Fall, before graduating onto increasingly crowded environments sometime in 2009. Unlike some of the company’s earlier (and more bizarre looking) personal transporters, the Winglets are actually expected to go into production in 2010.