It’s a bus, it’s a train, it’s a DMV! The world’s first dual-mode vehicle, equally at home on road and rail, is set to make its public debut on Saturday in the town of Kaiyo in Japan’s Tokushima prefecture.
The DMV looks like a minibus and runs on normal rubber tires on the road. But when it arrives at an interchange, steel wheels descend from the vehicle’s underbelly onto the rail track, effectively turning it into a train carriage.
The train wheels lift the front tires off the track while the rear wheels stay down to propel the DMV onto the railway. The CEO of Asa Coast Railway company, which operates the DMVs, said the vehicles could help small towns like Kaiyo with an aging and shrinking population, where local transport companies struggle to make a profit.