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Watch A Robot’s Attempt To Beat 7 Time MotoGP Champion’s Lap Time



MOTOBOT is an autonomous motorcycle-riding humanoid robot that approaches riding operations from a human rider’s standpoint, with no modifications made to the motorcycle itself.The development theme is “Beyond Human Capabilities.”

The end goal of MOTOBOT is to become capable of competing against Valentino Rossi’s lap times around a racetrack. The knowledge and highly advanced fundamental technologies gained from this challenge will be put to use in developing new products and creating new value.

We hear a lot about self-driving cars, but not so much about self-driving motorcycles. Perhaps the most advanced autonomous motorcycle so far is the experimental Yamaha Motobot. Currently, on its second version, Yamaha just showed off what this robot is capable of at the Tokyo Motor Show. Rather than focusing on driving safely and obeying traffic laws on the street like most self-driving car experiments, Motobot was purposely built for going fast on the track. 

The Motobot project started back in 2015 and achieved its goal to make Motobot Version 1 ride on a straight-line to a top speed of 100 kilometers per hour (62 miles per hour),running a slalom course and also cornering

Motobot Version 2(2017)also reached its goal of deducing the requirements for riding that exceeds human capabilities and also to lap a racetrack at 200 km/h or higher.

And the next objective was to challenge seven-time MotoGP champion Valentino Rossi to a race.

The two Yamaha teammates did a lap around the two-mile-long West course at Thunderhill Raceway in Northern California.

It turns out Rossi is significantly faster around a track than a robot. The man beat the machine by a little more than 30 seconds with a time of 85.74 seconds easily beating Motobot’s time of 117.504 seconds.

While Motobot did get beaten pretty badly, it’s still pretty impressive that a motorcycle with no human rider can make it around a two-mile course at all.

Rossi won this time, but he should expect a rematch in the near future.


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