BMW paves the way for automated motorcycle technology


Automated driving has long been one of the main goals of the automotive industry. Companies like Tesla have pioneered the introduction of driverless cars. There are many variations of programming to try to master automated driving. From simple automated lane change and braking systems to highly advanced fully automated driving systems powered by AI and AR, it’s safe to say that the reality of driverless cars is closer than we think.

however, BMW Motorrad looked in another direction on the future of vehicles and turned to automated motorcycles. Hundreds of additional factors must be taken into account to make a motorcycle truly autonomous. They must also ensure 100% safety for the rider, as motorcycles do not have as many safety measures as those of a car. A high percentage of motorcycle accidents are fatal compared to those in cars due to the driver’s environment.

Despite all this, BMW Motorrad ventured to automate motorcycles. It’s an incredible feat because motorcycles are much more difficult to automate than cars.

Beginning of automated motorcycles

the BMW R1200GS This is what BMW Motorrad came up with in an attempt to manufacture an autonomous motorcycle. While the bike itself isn’t nearly ready for the road, it can serve as a platform for engineers to better program a system more suited to everyday use.

That being said, BMW Motorrad’s motorcycle has a perfectly maintained balance, navigating a track and changing speed as needed. So it looks like self-driving motorcycles aren’t that far-fetched either, right? However, motorcycles are much more complicated because they are a whole different concept than self-driving cars.

BMW Motorrad

It is difficult to program a system capable of navigating and driving the motorcycle while maintaining balance over different qualities of terrain, which BMW Motorrad tried to solve with its vehicle. Apart from this, companies should also consider accommodating the different proportions of height and weight that riders may have.

BMW Motorrad’s motorcycle still holds great promise as a stepping stone to the right path. Self-driving cars were also initially flawed and still have some imperfections. Until the safety of drivers and pedestrians is ensured, these vehicles will not be used by the public on the streets, but it won’t be long before we do. Eventually, all forms of vehicular transport are likely to be automated, and vehicles like the BMW R 1200 GS show that the future of autonomous vehicles is bright.

YouTube: The BMW R 1200 GS is the autonomous motorcycle

Photo credits: The images used are the property of BMW and are intended for the press.

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About Todd Wurtsbach

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