honda commissions series of autonomous vehicles designed for crossing the world
all images courtesy of petr krejci




commissioned by japanese carmaker honda, barber osgerby’s design firm map project office and mori inc. create a series of autonomous vehicles meant for crossing the world in one ‘great journey’. the seven concept vehicles focus on different stages of the world’s longest route of human migration from nairobi, kenya to manaus, brazil. with models crafted by ogle models, map and mori worked with petr krejci to create film sets representing the terrains imagined and through stop frame and live action film brought the whole vision to life. 


video courtesy of honda



traveling through grass plains, deserts, mountains, sea, snow and jungle, creative director mori harano and his team at map realized that one vehicle could never cover the distance of this journey without compromises to comfort and pleasure. so they decide to break into seven stages and designed separate vehicles for each, allowing them to tailor the design for each terrain and consider the needs of the environment for pleasurable travel and living. 

the ‘desert train’




desert train


to tackle sandy and rocky desert, the team looked to the most traditional desert vehicle – the camel train. a series of connected vehicles slowly and efficiently tackle the terrain powered by honda fuel cells. excess water generated as a by-product is filtered into the rolling container at the rear.

honda-map-project-office-and-mori-great-journey-models-autonomous-vehicles-designboom-03the ‘road tripper’




road tripper


the paved roads from alaska to mexico provide the smoothest leg of the journey. the ‘road tripper’ uses honda’s autonomous driving technology and their gyro-steering system to allow riders to enjoy the californian coastal roads from the comfort of a sofa. the aerodynamic glass and stainless steel tube is influenced by the form and graphic language of honda’s 1960s formula one cars and daytona motorcycles and opens up in the evenings. 

designed to handle paved roads 

the ‘island hopper’ 




island hopper


hopping from hong kong, across japan to the peninsula of kamchatka, the island hopper deals with the mixture of rocky beaches, islands and ocean. using honda’s expertise with lightweight formula one structures and solar technology, it is an amphibious vehicle powered by six paddle wheels.

capable of travel between islands through the water

the ‘mountain climber’




mountain climber


as heavy duty truck with high ground clearance and a solid metal body, the mountain climber would protect inhabitants from rock fall on the treacherous himalayan roads. using similar technology from honda’s asimo project, the robotic legs would be deployed to travel over fallen boulders and re-build damaged roads. the chalet-like interior is capped at either end with floor-to-ceiling glass to create a viewing platform. 

the movable legs to climb over rocks 

the ‘tundra sled’




tundra sled


to cross the frozen north, map used a series of wheel drones with honda’s ‘uni-cub’ self balancing drive units to pull a sled along. acting as a pack to avoid cracks and crevasses in the ice, the luxurious sled includes a hot tub on the rear deck with an integrated telescope to enjoy the unpolluted night sky.

wheels drones act as sled-dogs pulling the vehicle 

the ‘safari drifter’




safari drifter


the vehicle is designed for maximum enjoyment of the african plains. influenced by the utilitarian 1970s honda ‘vamos’, it combines the capabilities of a four-wheel drive with the comforts of a camper van. it also includes autonomous honda mowers act as drones to guide the vehicle

a ballon raises the canopy for views of the safari 

the ‘jungle jumper’




jungle jumper


for the last leg of thick jungle, a two-part vehicle influenced by honda’s ’T360’ pickup trucks. the six-wheeled truck rides on high suspension with deep-tread tires for extra traction. on its back, ride the habitation unit which is hoisted into the trees at the end of the day and concertinas open to provide platforms for sleeping, living and enjoying the jungle’s canopy.

the habitation unit hangs for sleeping, living 

the project with all the influences pin for each section of the journey