Amid the excitement surrounding the displaying of Toyota’s FCV and FV2 concepts at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show, another important debut occurred this week in another part of the world – the first appearance of the Toyota i-ROAD on the streets of Japan.
Taking place in Toyota City, this marked the first time that the i-ROAD has been driven on public roads, and the first time that members of the general public have been able to experience for themselves the sensation of driving this novel concept vehicle.
The i-ROAD is an ultra-compact, three-wheeled electric vehicle concept designed to make short-distance travel in cities smoother and more enjoyable. Easy to handle, i-ROAD gives the driver the sensation of being at one with the machine as it speeds along narrow streets and leans intuitively through the corners as if you were riding a bicycle.
More than just a mental exercise, i-ROAD is a key component in Toyota’s vision of a future urban traffic system that intelligently combines public transportation systems with EVs such as the i-ROAD in order to reach your destination. The overall purpose is to place minimum stress on both people and the environment, while alleviating traffic congestion and minimising the inefficient use of parking spaces.
Towards the end of 2014, i-ROAD will also appear on the roads of Grenoble, France, as it participates in another next-generation urban traffic system supported by Toyota. It will be among 70 ultra-compact EVs included in a large-scale car-sharing project that aims to offer an environmental and people-friendly mobility solution.
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