On March 6, 2015, Honda organized a coverage at the Twin Ring Motegi. Products equipped with Honda’s general-purpose engines, such as the provided turret truck, were the focus. The turret truck is a three-wheeled transport vehicle that carries things in wholesale markets.
Honda, as an OEM, provided the engine for the Mighty Car V3-CNG, the demonstration vehicle from the Kanto Agricultural Machinery Corporation. It is mounted with the 389cc Honda GX390 engine. This is an OHV air-cooled four-stroke single cylinder engine that generates a maximum output of 7.9kW (13ps). This engine is mounted directly above the front wheel. The rotation and turning of the engine along with the tire is the main feature of the turret truck.
It is a vehicle fueled by CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) rather than gasoline; gas was therefore provided in the coverage. The 26-liter gas cylinder lay under the loading platform. Were it full, the truck can be used for about two weeks of wholesale market work.
Its running cost is cheaper than gasoline engine. However, certain gas facilities need to refill it with gas. Therefore, its use is limited to both Sapporo and Sendai markets only as only both have gas facilities nearby. Even so, about 900 units are used at these markets.
Operating it is rather simple. A round steering handle is attached to the cylinder in front of the body. There is also a round accelerator handle congruent to the inner cylinder. When you push the handle for acceleration, the accelerator turns on then the unit advances. If you release the handle, it turns the accelerator off and it consequently decelerates.
There is a brake pedal on the right side of the driver’s foot. The driver can easily operate it if he leans his body backwards instead of leaning on the handle. Its body size is 3280mmÃ—1100Ã—1800mm (lengthÃ—widthÃ—height). It feels comfortable when you grasp the accelerator handle. However, it starts with quite a powerful burst. Its maximum load capacity is 1000kg and its top speed is 15km/h. It is big, but it also unexpectedly powerful.
There is no steer-assist. It is so heavy that it almost cannot turn while idle. Steering is done with the tire along with its engine. However, its handling gradually becomes lighter once you start moving. The steering angle of the handle is huge, about 210 degrees to the left and right. In other words, it is possible to steer more than a right angle with its 110-degree turn.
Hence, even though its overall length is 3280mm, itse minimum turning radius is 2430mm in the outer-most side. Its maneuverability is very good. In addition, not rolling during cornering is another of its feature. You do not have to worry about water spilling even when it is loaded with objects containing water and other liquids.
(Translated by Natassia Jeronne D. Martinez)