A chameleon-like vehicle that changes color according to the driver's mood, suggests destinations based on facial expressions, and warns of cars in blind spots forms part of Toyota Motor Corp.'s vision for the future.
The color-changing car is among the concept models that Toyota plans to display at the biennial Tokyo Motor Show this month. Still a work-in-progress, the vehicle codenamed Toyota FV2 presents applications that engineers envision may come out of the automaker's research into humanoid robots and their use of facial and voice recognition.
Toyota joins automakers including General Motors Co. in introducing computer-assisted technology that helps reduce accidents and human error on the road, and may eventually allow cars to drive themselves. Mountain View, Calif.-based Google Inc., operator of the largest Web search engine, has been testing driverless cars in the U.S.
Toyota will also display a concept version of a hydrogen-powered car at the Tokyo show as part of plans to introduce a fuel-cell vehicle around 2015.
U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama will visit Japan for three days from March 18, as part of her campaign to promote education for women and volunteer activities in developing countries, the White House announced Tuesday. (Jiji Press)
Microsoft Corp. cofounder Paul Allen said on Twitter Tuesday the Imperial Japanese Navy's World War II battleship Musashi has been found at the bottom of the Sibuyan Sea off the central Philippines. (Jiji Press)
The Cabinet on Tuesday signed off on a bill that would revise the adult entertainment business law to enable discos and nightclubs that offer dancing to operate past midnight as long as they meet interior lighting criteria. (Japan Times)
In the latest allegations of questionable political donations now aimed at top party leaders, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the main opposition party president are linked to contributions from companies after ministries awarded them subsidies, it was learned March 3. (Asahi)
Osaka Prefectural Police on Friday announced the arrest of a late-shift taxi driver from Joto Ward for allegedly raping a number of intoxicated female passengers, reports the Asahi Shimbun. (Tokyo Reporter)
A 65-year-old man who was arrested and jailed for causing trouble at a gasoline station in Mitaka, Tokyo, was rearrested after he returned to the same gas station upon his release and threatened the owner, police said Monday. (Japan Today)