Honda unveils ASIMO-style bionic legs

Too old for a motorbike? Don't worry, you can still get from A to B thanks to Honda's latest gizmo

Handy for lengthy Post Office queues

HONDA MOTORS have unveiled a new walking assist machine designed for the elderly.

The computerised leg device weighs 6.5kg and can reduce the load on users' legs while walking or climbing and descending stairs by supporting bodyweight, Honda said.

The concept is still at an experimental stage, but elderly people and people undergoing rehabilitation who need support for their leg muscles and joints are the main target.

"We used ASIMO's technology for developing the walking assist device," Masato Hirose, a senior engineer at Honda Research and Development, told AFP.

"ASIMO is designed to be used as a tool, but the walking assist device is designed to complement real human bodies," he said. "Both will exist for the sake of people. First, we hope to have visible results in rehabilitation and other medical fields," Hirose said. "Then we will look at welfare as another target."