The Unicycle has never looked comfortable to ride. Fitted with a motor and sporting a famous car manufacturer's badge doesn't help either. However, I can't imagine the Honda U3-X personal mobility system being anything but a potential success.
You heard that right. Honda has a motorized unicycle of their own, a revelation that likely dampens any hope for the EniCycle becoming the first vehicle of its kind, at this point. It appears to be simpler, smaller and lighter, too, despite not looking any more comfortable to manage.
Weighing only 22 lbs, the U3-X is designed for unobtrusive short-distance mobility, allowing for motorized travel without intruding on other people's space, the way something like a wheelchair or a Segway might do. The vehicle is self-balancing and changes direction using a system of mini-wheels installed inside the larger single wheel that's barely noticeable from plain sight. It uses a lithium-ion battery that's capable of running for up to one hour on a full charge, with a maximum speed of 3.7 mph.
Too slow for you? Probably so, since Honda's looking at the product as a possible mobility system for people of advancing years. Once they put this out, though, I'm betting it takes no more than a couple of months before somebody figures out how to fit in a bigger motor in there. Unicycle races, anyone?
Don't get your hopes up too much, however. Honda says the U3-X is currently in the proposal stages and they're still looking at the product's potential viability. Personally, I think they're insane for even thinking twice about this - I'll snap up two of these babies in a heartbeat. Bring it on, Honda, bring it on.