This technology has been available in cars for some time, but now Bosch has unveiled what they call the world’s first side view assistance system for motorcycles.

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According to Bosch, the system uses four ultrasonic sensors that monitor your bike’s surroundings. The sensors cover a distance of up to five meters in areas that are difficult or impossible to see using just the mirrors. Whenever there is a vehicle in the rider’s blind spot, the technology warns them using an optical signal close to the mirror, so they can avoid a collision when changing lanes.

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The idea is to help motorcyclists know what is going on in their blind spots, thus making it easier to change road position safely. “We want to make motorcycling safer without sacrificing riding enjoyment,” said Bosch board member Dr. Dirk Hoheisel.

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Here’s how it all works according to Bosch:

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Bosch side view assist’s four ultrasonic sensors are installed in pairs in the bodywork at the front and rear of the bike. The rear sensors monitor the blind spot in the neighboring lanes to the left and right. The two front sensors provide a plausibility check.

If the front left sensor detects an object before the rear left sensor does, then the control unit knows that this is an oncoming vehicle on the other side of the road – and issues no warning. Vehicles that are in the process of parking are similarly recognised and do not lead to a warning. Only if one of the rear ultrasonic sensors registers an object before the front sensors do will the system issue a warning to the rider; it does not intervene in their riding maneuvers.

Side view assist is active at speeds ranging from 25 to 80 kilometers per hour and supports riders whenever the difference in relative speed to other road users is small. The system helps improve safety especially in cities, where heavy traffic makes it necessary to change lanes more often.

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Side view assist from Bosch gives you eyes in the back of your head (kind of)

Tony Carter

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