TOTO’s Toilet Motorcycle Will Travel Japan Entirely on Biogas
Hold on to your butts everyone! That’s right. Japan’s number one toilet maker TOTO has created a toilet-motorcycle hybrid vehicle that runs entirely on biogas (read: human waste). Theoretically, as long as the driver continues to eat and drink, the motorcycle could run forever! Dubbed the Toilet Bike Neo Project, the campaign is part of the TOTO Green Challenge, the company’s stated goal of achieving 50% reductions in CO2 emissions in bathrooms by 2017 (vs 1990 levels).
In just 6 days the highly anticipated toilet motorcycle will take off on a month-long journey from Kyushu to Tokyo, making stops along the way to show off their new innovation and to educate people on the various green initiatives that TOTO is undertaking. For the last couple days the TOTO blog has been teasing us with renderings and even a blurred out image of the actual toilet motorcycle. But today – finally! – they have revealed their innovation in full form. Behold: Toilet Bike Neo!
Toilet Bike Neo is also equipped with some other cool functions. It uses residual light imagery to write messages in the air as it zooms by (you can see an example by scrolling down to their Sep 26 blog entry). It can also play music to entertain spectators. Finally, the toilet actually talks. This is a technology that TOTO has been equipping many of their new toilets with. For a complete archive of all the new toilet technology, take a look at these fascinating videos, which include fortune-telling, stock-quote-reading, weather-forecasting toilets.
If you’re wondering, how do I catch a glimpse of this fantastic contraption? Well, you’re not alone. The motorcycle doesn’t take off until October 6th so the staff are slowly leaking details. What we know is that the starting point is the TOTO Headquarters in Kitakyushu. It will then head to Nakatsu in Oita prefecture to pay homage to an ass-shaped boulder (yes, they are obviously having a lot of fun with this). From there the motorcycle will hitch a ride on a ferry to Hiroshima, then to Okayama and then to Kobe. After riding around Nara and Kyoto they will hit up Aichi, Shizuoka and then Tokyo. For more details you’ll have to keep checking their blog, where daily updates have been posted.
UPDATE – 10/6/2011
The toilet bike neo has launched! You can follow its adventures on twitter.
(From here on is the nerd inside me talking. If you have no interest in Japanese manga, stop reading now.) I couldn’t help but think that this toilet was invented for auto-bike kozo (オートバイこぞう), a fictional character who appears in the manga Dr. Slump – Akira Toriyama’s 1980 pièce de résistance. Accordingly, auto-bike kozo suffers from a rare, yet tragic orphan disease known as I-die-if-I-disembark-my-motorcycle syndrome. Because of this disease he is forced to wear clothing that comes with an opening around his rear (click here for visual) so he never has to take a bathroom break. Auto-bike kozo – your dream just came true.
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