Now if only Miimo could take out the dirt

Tokyo - Honda finally has its first product for the home packed with its prized robotics technology - a sensor-equipped lawn mower.

Miimo goes on sale next year, in only Europe, where spacious lawns are often enclosed in gates, targeting 4,000 unit sales a year.

Asimo, Honda Motors' walking talking robot, shows the company's new lawn mower, Milmo. Scientists say human romance with robots can't be ruled out of a near future. Picture: Honda Motor Corp. Credit: AP

The machine, which looks a bit like iRobot's Roomba vacuum cleaner, continuously shaves about 3 millimetres off the grass, maneuvering itself on slopes.

It won't break potted plants, goes to charge itself on its own and won't wander off.

Honda robots, like its Asimo walking talking robot, have sometimes been criticised as impractical toys.

Honda said Miimo is a real product, selling for 2,100 euros (about R21 000) to 2,500 euros. - Sapa-AP