Honda Unveils Experimental Walking Assist

Japanese manufacturer Honda has just unveiled the experimental Walking Assist device which helps supporting bodyweight by reducing the legs load while walking. Basically, Honda designed this technology “with the goal to provide more people with the joy of mobility,” as it said in a press statement but, having a look at a few photos showing Honda workers testing the device while assembling cars and motorcycles, one might see the device as a productivity booster.

The whole system is based on a simple principle: the walking assist device reduced the load on leg muscles by supporting a part of the bodyweight, using the integrated seat, frame and shoes.

“Honda developed a unique mechanism where the seat and frame follow the movement of the body and legs. The assisting force will be directed toward the use's center of gravity, just as with human legs, which enables the device to provide assistance in various movements and postures including walking, going up and down stairs, and in a semi-crouching position,” the Japanese manufacturer said in a press statement.

The “experimental walking assist device with bodyweight support system” has a total weight of 6.5 kg, including shoes and batteries. And because we were talking about battery, the device is powered by a lithium-ion battery capable of providing a 2-hour operating time per charge, including walking or working in a semi-crouching posture.

The device is still in testing for the time being but Honda says that it may reach mass production in the next few months. “To evaluate the effectiveness of the experimental model of the walking assist device with bodyweight support system, Honda will test the walking assist device at its Saitama Factory (in Sayama, Saitama) starting this month,” it stated.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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