Personal transporters have shrunk a lot from the days of the Segway, but they’re still something you need to carry awkwardly when taking a break from rolling around on wheels. The WalkCar is hoping to change that with a form factor that can squeeze into a laptop bag.
Made by Japan-based Cocoa Motors, the whole device measures around the size of an extra-thick laptop, so you can carry it and put it away as conveniently as your work computer. Throw it in a backpack (yes, the laptop sleeve will work), tuck it under an arm, or slip it into your messenger – the whole thing should integrate into your everyday habits without any major adjustment.
The WalkCar manages the compact size by using a laptop-sized board and a quartet of small wheels, resulting in dimensions that are much smaller than existing solutions in the market (yes, even motorized skateboards). Weighing just 6.6 pounds, it barely adds any weight to your ensemble, too, all while supporting passengers up to 265 pounds. Because it’s firmly planted on four wheels, there’s not a lot of balancing needed to be done, so the learning curve should be lower than those one- and two-wheeled transporters currently in circulation.
To use, you simply step onto the platform, at which point the WalkCar starts automatically, with steering accomplished by simply shifting your weight. It can hit top speeds of 6.2 mph, with an onboard battery that can keep it running for up to 7.5 miles on a full charge. Stepping off automatically brings it to a full stop.
As of now, WalkCar is preparing to run a crowdfunding campaign in the autumn, with shipments slated to go out spring of next year. Price is expected to be around $800.