While some robot enthusiasts are busy developing the next generation of tiny hexapod robots, one British engineer has been hard at work creating a giant-sized version that can be operated from a jet fighter-style cockpit.
Dubbed the Mantis by its inventor, Matt Denton, the diesel-powered, nearly two-ton hexapod walking machine is, according to its designer, the biggest, all-terrain hexapod robot in the world. Each of its six hydraulically-assisted legs operate independently, allowing the vehicle to delicately step over particularly difficult obstacles, and even push objects blocking its path out of the way. A monster this size isn't built over a weekend. It took four years to build the Mantis.
Inside the cockpit is a simple, yet well-designed control panel that provides a visual readout of the vehicle's functions, including the operational status of each individual leg. In addition to the control panels, the Mantis itself appears to be driven by two rubberized joysticks on either side of the driver.
Although it's not as environmentally friendly as a Tesla, if this guy can come up with a high-speed version of the Mantis that operates on cruise control, wouldn't you rather ride in a giant robot spider? Luckily, Denton's giant hexapod is available for private hire, events, sponsorships and and custom commissions. You can decide for yourself if the Mantis is worth renting after you take a look at the awesome vehicle demonstration in the video below. A huge gallery of robo spider pics can be found on Facebook, too.