Toyota Motor Corp. unveiled four humanoid robot prototypes Thursday, some of which can walk and play the trumpet.

During a demonstration at a Tokyo hotel, a bipedal robot walked onstage and played “When You Wish Upon A Star” on the trumpet, using its artificial lips. Joined by a two-wheeled robot, also on trumpet, the duo played another tune to much applause.

Toyota’s first robots are as yet unnamed, unlike their counterpart Asimo, from Honda Motor Co.

The two other robots are both bipeds. One has a seat that can carry a person. This robot weighs 75 kg and the two trumpet-playing models each weigh around 35 kg. The fourth model — the lightest of the four, weighing 24 kg — is built for speed.

Toyota said it hopes to commercialize the robots for use in various areas, including nursing-care and manufacturing.

“We have sought to contribute to society through the manufacture of goods and automobiles,” Toyota President Fujio Cho told a news conference. “As people seek a more diversified and sophisticated lifestyle, we have come up with the development of partner robots that can work with people.”

Cho said the development of artificial lips was especially difficult. Toyota claims it is the first to have developed such technology.

It said the two trumpet-playing robots will perform at the 2005 Aichi World Exposition.


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