Japan's Toyota Motor Corp. and Lixil Corp. have jointly developed a "mobile toilet" trailer for wheelchair users, hoping it will help increase their opportunities to enjoy outdoor events where barrier-free restrooms have not always been prepared.
The spacious private toilet, pulled by a car, will also come in handy in times of disaster.
The major automaker and leading housing equipment manufacturer developed the trailer -- 5.3 meters in length, 2.5 meters in width and 2.9 meters in height -- by taking into account the views of wheelchair users, welfare engineering experts and para athletes.
Its low-floor design enables a gentle slope and smooth entry by wheelchair users. The toilet is equipped with handrails, an emergency button and a flushable sink for people with ostomies.
Before entering the toilet, users will go through a separate multi-purpose room that has a bench and a full-length mirror.
Toyota and Lixil combined their respective expertise on mobility and barrier-free toilets to create the vehicle after hearing that some wheelchair users refrain from going out due to a lack of restrooms they can use, a Lixil official said.
The mobile toilet was unveiled at an event in Yokohama, near Tokyo, in late November. The two companies will continue setting it up at various outdoor events to gather feedback from wheelchair users for use in improving the vehicle.
The toilet trailer was developed as a social contribution and there is no plan at this point to turn it into a business operation, a Toyota spokeswoman said.