car news

Self-driving motorcycle is coming…

April 11, 2023

It is still future music, but stories are popping up here and there that motorcycle manufacturers are working on systems to reduce the chances of falling with the bike. BMW is conducting experiments, and Yamaha and Honda are also doing studies. The latest feat is a system that can keep the heavy Honda Gold Wing 1800 upright if a wheel slips.

Patent application Honda Gold Wing

It appears from an article on the German site, which has regular reports on patent applications from manufacturers. Honda has applied for a patent for a steering correction or grip system for the Gold Wing. This intervenes as soon as the engine slips by executing a steering response with lightning speed and possibly taking over throttle control. Also, this system could help with low-speed steering so that maneuvering with the engine is a little easier.

Electronic brain

To that end, an electronic brain controls an electric motor that can take over the steering. That brain gets information from numerous sensors that record lean angle, steering angle, grip and throttle position. Actually, it seems that a so-called 6-axle IMU will be used, as we already know it as a control unit for ABS and traction control in cornering.

2018 Honda GL1800 Goldwing

Automatic steering correction

The automatic steering correction system offers more options. It does not take much imagination to understand that the system can do the same thing as steering assist systems in cars. These are well-nigh commonplace and help the driver quickly swerve or stay within the lines of the lane or steer back if a vehicle is in the blind spot of the wing mirrors.

Autonomous driving motorcycle?

A further step could even be a partially autonomous driving motorcycle. However, this is a lot more complicated than with a car. After all, a motorcycle is a balance vehicle. Everyone knows that you can ride with loose hands, as you can on a bicycle. The question then becomes how you as a rider react to a movement of the bike that goes against your own sense of balance. It will still take some study before there really will be a completely self-driving motorcycle. The system envisioned by Honda for the Gold Wing seems to make more sense for preventing or minimizing fall damage.