• Kyodo News


Segway Japan Ltd. plans to expand sales of its Segway personal transporter electric vehicles to Japanese companies to more than 1,000 units by the end of March 2012, up from about 300 units it hopes to sell this business year.

The two-wheeled, self-balancing vehicles — priced at ¥935,000 for the basic model — are used at sightseeing resorts, golf courses, factories and warehouses.

The company took over sales in Japan of the vehicle, which was invented in the United States, from SGI Japan Ltd. last month.

In Japan, the vehicle cannot yet be used on public thoroughfares and has not achieved widespread sales.

Segway Japan President Hiroshi Otsuka said at a news conference Thursday he would like to urge the government to allow the vehicles to be driven on walkways, as in some places in Europe and North America.

James Norrod, president of U.S.-based Segway Inc., which exports the scooter to Japan, also took part in the press conference in Yokohama.

Regarding the two-seat electric vehicle PUMA that Segway and General Motors Corp. are developing, Norrod said the project can tap the two firms’ technologies.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.