Toyota’s innovative solutions to ensure mobility

Toyota’s Concept-i Ride vehicle is designed to help people navigate life, especially those that may have mobility issues.

DETROIT. Toyota is known for its innovation, and some of the concept vehicles it has brought to the North American International Auto Show this week in Detroit continue that tradition.

First shown at the Tokyo Motor Show in 2013, the FV2 is Toyota’s approach to create a “fun to drive” vehicle. The futuristic FV2 is a two-seater with doors that open upward. Looking like a cross between a three-wheel motorcycle and a car, the vehicle has no steering wheel, rather the driver steers the FV2 with his or her body weight, shifting in the direction they want the car to go – left, right, forward or backwards.

It will accumulate driving history to suggest driving routes and even determine the driver’s skill level to assist in driving technique, Toyota noted. The FV2 also incorporates both voice and image recognition to determine the driver’s mood and will change its body color and exterior display to match, creating a bond like no other between a person and their car.

In a more realistic vision, Toyota showcased its Concept-i Ride and Walk vehicles.

The Ride features gull-wing doors and an electric seat that slides towards the door opening, making it easy for people with mobility issues to enter the vehicle. The car is controlled using a joystick instead of a steering wheel and accelerator and brake pedals. It utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) to “support and enhance journeys, such as details of facilities with access provisions for disabled people.”

The driver is centrally positioned and assisted by automated parking/automated valet parking.

Concept-i Walk is designed to help pedestrians navigate their surroundings. It is narrower than a person’s shoulder width and provides a stride that is shorter than the average stride. A user simply stands on the Walk and, with the assistance of AI data obtained from sensors in its handles, can navigate. If it senses danger while in motion, it will warn the driver and automatically take avoiding measures. It has three wheels and changes its wheelbase according to vehicle speed ensure stability when driving and stopping.

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Brian Straight

Brian Straight covers general transportation news and leads the editorial team as Managing Editor. A journalism graduate of the University of Rhode Island, he has covered everything from a presidential election, to professional sports and Little League baseball, and for more than 10 years has covered trucking and logistics. Before joining FreightWaves, he was previously responsible for the editorial quality and production of Fleet Owner magazine and Brian lives in Connecticut with his wife and two kids and spends his time coaching his son’s baseball team, golfing with his daughter, and pursuing his never-ending quest to become a professional bowler.