I'm impressed by a new way to tow motor vehicles - and to get to them through heavy traffic, if necessary.
A Swedish company, Coming Through, has developed the Retriever, a towing apparatus that fits onto the back of a motorcycle. Folded up, it looks like a high seat-back for the rider, with some weird bits and pieces behind it:
When it arrives at the scene of an accident or an immobilized vehicle, the driver unfolds the towing apparatus from the back:
When the vehicle's been hitched up, the result looks like this:
The vehicles are apparently very popular in Japan, where they seem to be in widespread use. The forum SVRider has some pictures of them in action.
They're also available in the USA. Apparently several have already been sold, and the US distributors are expecting to expand their market share significantly.
I'd have thought that the enormous weight difference between a car and a motorcycle would make for towing problems, but apparently the trailer is designed to deal with this. Effectively, all the weight of the towed vehicle is taken by the wheels of the trailer, leaving the bike free to simply pull it ahead, not carry an additional load.
There's a video demonstrating its operation.