No surprises where this one comes from, and we’re pretty sure it was no big surprise to local folk when Hitoshi Takahashi revealed his creation – the Kabutom RX-03, which resembles a giant robotic rhinoceros beetle. While the creation is pretty much benign, with no giant lasers, gatling guns, and rocket launchers, you’ve got to give it to the guy for building it, considering he did it single handedly and is 67 years old this year. God bless Takahashi’s soul too, as it would appear he had no intention of taking it out on a city smashing rampage, but instead made it safe for children to enjoy as a joyride… for which he reportedly charges about US$2 per pop.
Regardless, if you’ve been checking out the recent exosuits, mechs and cure for verbal diarrheaavailable from the land of the rising sun, the possibilities for the weaponisation with this baby (at very least in the movies) is highly plausible.
his plans for world domination in 1997 at the age of 50, Takahashi took 11 years to complete the project. He was still not retired, and worked on the mammoth creation in his free time while managing his machine shop in the Ibaraki Prefecture, which incidentally is a hub for science centres and engineering colleges. Put that and Japan’s overall fascination with giant robots together, and this was just waiting to happen. Wasn’t it?
Measuring a frightening 36 feet in height and 3.6 meters in length, the Kabutom weighs a whopping 17 tons, and is surprisingly powered by twin diesel engines, and not anything along the line of flux capacitors and plutonium cores as much as we wish it was. It has some 30 moving parts, and does in fact look pretty darn futuristic with the ability to spew smoke from its head, and twitch its horn and (non flight-capable) wings on its back. It can walk though, at a beetlesque 4km/h, and hold up to seven people… just like family MPV.