Oct 10, 2017

Yamaha MOTOBOT to return at this year's 2017 Tokyo Motor Show

Yamaha's blue robotic racer, the MOTOBOT, is expected to return this year with improved performance and backed by a new trademark that hints at a larger line of products using its technologies.

Self-driving cars are all the rage these days, but Yamaha went a slightly different direction with the MOTOBOT, a robot designed to ride and compete with real human motorcycle racers. Yamaha's MOTOBOT was first announced in 2015, and progress has gone on behind the scenes and out of the public eye. That may change though; a new trademark filed by Yamaha hints that we'll be seeing the MOTOBOT back in action and fulfilling its potential at this year's Tokyo Motor Show.

Yamaha has just filed a trademark application for the term MOTOROiD, and the application details a wide range of applications, including motorcycles, motor scooters, mopeds, the parts and fittings for these, and more. The most interesting items are self-balancing motorcycles, and stability control systems for motorcycles. This coincides nicely with Yamaha's earlier MOTOBOT project revealed during the Tokyo Motor Show back in 2015.

Back then, the MOTOBOT was capable of riding a top speed of 100km/h on a standard slalom course with cornering. Yamaha announced the time table for their project, and were shooting to get the MOTOBOT running at 200km/h in two years. That means this year's Tokyo Motor Show later this month, and this filing of the trademark likely isn't just a coincidence. We are likely looking at a concerted push with a full line of MOTOROiD-branded products with the MOTOBOT at the head.

The MOTOBOT is a robot, but the technology in it will be the basis for the next generation of traction control and balancing assist technologies. That's exactly the buzz words we're seeing filed for the MOTOROiD trademark, and if Yamaha has developed the MOTOBOT's capabilities to the point that it can tackle those corners at 200km/h, the balancing and stability systems must be pretty advanced and ready for further applications.

Yamaha has also teased the MOTOBOT on a new micro site with a human dressed in the MOTOBOT's blue uniform doing various activities. It's looking more and more that the MOTOBOT will be making its appearance at this year's Tokyo Motor Show, and we're excited to see what Yamaha has in store.