During the Tokyo Motor Show this week, Yamaha released something very unique – the MotoBot.
The prototype MotoBot is a humanoid robot that is being developed to pilot a motorcycle competently on a racetrack. The Yamaha Motobot’s first task was aboard the YZF-R1M, the Japanese motorcycle manufacturer’s flagship superbike.The Yamaha Motobot rides the YZF-R1 M in a straightline, the bike currently donning training wheels. The MotoBot actually has to twist the wrist for throttle, use the brakes and shift the transmission. The ultimate purpose of this project is to have the Motobot ride on a world-class MotoGP track at speeds well over 120 mph.Yamaha obviously has high hopes for the MotoBot – the video above shows the MotoBot taunting Yamaha’s star MotoGP pilot – nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi.Following is from the brief Yamaha explanation of its new MotoBot:This is an autonomous motorcycle-riding humanoid robot built around a fusion of Yamaha’s motorcycle and robotics technology. R&D is currently underway with the goal of developing the robot to ride an unmodified motorcycle on a racetrack at more than 200 km/h. The task of controlling the complex motions of a motorcycle at high speeds requires a variety of control systems that must function with a high degree of accuracy. We want to apply the fundamental technology and know-how gained in the process of this challenge to the creation of advanced rider safety and rider-support systems and put them to use in our current businesses, as well as using them to pioneer new lines of business.
This week, Senior Editor Nic de Sena rides the all new Ducati Monster. Big changes have been made by Ducati–has the company ruined the considerable heritage of the iconic Monster–or are the changes worth it? In the second part of the show, we chat with Nick Ienatsch, Founder and Head Instructor at the Yamaha Champions Riding School. He says: “We aim to change your riding life by introducing you to Champions Habits: The techniques, approaches, skills, and the mindsets of the best riders in the world. These Champions Habits are the foundation of safety and consistency to whatever speed you ride, in any venue on any bike. Street riders, this is just as much for you as track riders. The best way to make safe riders is to make good riders.“ We hope you enjoy this episode!