A Traffic-Straddling Jeep Cherokee

Mecha-based anime can be fun to watch for the mechanical designs. While giant bi-pedal robots don’t make much practical sense, every once in a while the designers will stick something in there, like a funky car, that combines the fantastical with the pragmatic.

A good case in point was 1993’s Pat Labor 2, set in a near-future Tokyo. Because car traffic in the future is depicted to be as bad as it is today, mechanical designers Shoji Kawamori and Yutaka Izubuchi created four-wheeled emergency services vehicles that drive on the ground like regular cars, but can elevate on stilt-like legs, enabling them to whiz over lanes of standstill traffic in order to reach calls.

from Pat Labor 2

I always remembered those vehicles, and was stunned to see this video yesterday:

While the car is real, it isn’t going into mass production; it’s a promotional one-off created to flog Verizon’s new line of telematics products.

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