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[H]ardOCP: BMW Shows Off Self Driving Motorcycle

16 September 2018

I often wonder why with all the tech out there today, no one has shoehorned autonomy into a classic Bug.

The plan here, thankfully, isn't to take over the role of the rider completely so don't bank on seeing autonomous BMW motorcycles on the market anytime soon.

The prototype started life as an R 1200 GS model and comes with an antenna installed on a storage case behind the driver's seat. A BMW R 1200 GS made its first rounds in front of assembled journalists, as if by magic, at the BMW Group testing ground in Miramas, southern France.

There is still ways to go before motorcycle safety technologies catch up to the ones already offered in cars-that is if you're the kind of rider who would welcome these systems with open arms.

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If you thought motorcycles were exempt from the onslaught of self-driving technology, you thought wrong.

BMW hasn't fully disclosed the suite of technology required for its prototype, which allows the bike to ride on its own, but everything required fits into two cases mounted on either side of the seat. It allows the bike to self-balance, accelerate, complete the course on a test track and slow down to a stop. The bike was developed by a team lead by graduate engineer Stefan Hans, and features other technical innovations like a 3D printed frame and carbon components derived from BMW's motorcycle racing division. It will be tested to discover more about risky situations and the appropriate safety tech to support the ride in those.

Although, an entirely autonomous bike could be a pretty cool idea for some of the same reasons that semi-autonomous cars are cool. So you could pull up to your place of work, get off the bike and tell it to go find a spot, just like many auto concepts of today.

[H]ardOCP: BMW Shows Off Self Driving Motorcycle