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You’ve seen the pictures of this somewhat bizarre and interesting looking bot, but you’ve probably not heard the backstory yet. I’ve seen the images on every gadget blog there is, but Evan Ackerman at BotJunkie has translated enough of the original Japanese to make sense of the story:

Imagine if you will a world where human beings drive giant mechas around to get from place to place. Imagine also that the humans drive these giant mechas from seats mounted in a place that, if the bots were humans, you wouldn’t be allowed to straddle in public. The Chobu 01 was created by Japanese 3D artist Kazushi Kobayashi, and is from “a parallel 50s where the robots are the most popular transport system.” Pardon me, can you point me in the direction of this parallel universe of which you speak?

There are only 200 of these 1/12 scale models, and if you want one, they cost $315 and you’ll have to assemble it yourself. Lots more possibly naughty pics of Japanese schoolgirl types riding piloting the Chobu can be found over at Hobbymedia.it.

The models in the images are of impeccable quality, and without reading the Japanese (and without sufficient English posts to divine if it was a bot or a model), I couldn’t even determine the scale..

It’s a cool concept bot, and you gotta know I’d love to ride one of these to work, if I could.