Robotic taxi is sleek, small, seats two — but are our streets ready?

The idea of a car that drives itself has been kicking around for a while — especially as an automated urban people-mover — and that's exactly what designer Kubik Petr's robo-taxi is designed for. Looking a little bit like a Segway with a chassis, it seats two, is powered by electric motors and has space for luggage. While that low passenger limit is a concern, ideally there'd be a lot of these things on the streets and several could come to ferry large groups around, with passengers selecting where they want to go by way of a touchscreen in the cabin.

Of course, a design like this — as awesome as it is — sets off a few red flags. It doesn't look like it'd do well in a crash, for one, and its low clearance wouldn't accommodate anything but the most well-cared for, pristine street. And do we really have the infrastructure for something like this? Maybe if a city was built from the ground up for it — either way this wouldn't be good news for cabbies.

Kubik Design, via Ecofriend