According to ADAC Accident Research (the German automobile club), approximately one-fifth of all motorcycle accidents can be prevented if a bike is fitted with an anti-lock braking system. In addition, for all motorcycles over 125cc, ABS will become mandatory Europe-wide on all new type-approved motorcycles from 2016, and for all new motorcycles from 2017.
To improve the active safety of motorcycles, international automotive supplier Continental has expanded – based on its ABS technology for passenger cars – its range of electronic braking systems by introducing a single-channel ABS for smaller motorcycles and scooters. In spring 2014 for the first time worldwide, the safety system went into series production in the Vespa Primavera and the Vespa Sprint from the Italian manufacturer of two-wheeled motor vehicles, Piaggio Group.
With a box volume of less than 300cc and a weight of around 420g, the single-channel ABS unit can be easily installed in a wide range of motorcycle and scooter models. ABS control of the front wheel stops it from locking up, even during panic braking, and prevents a fall. Complementing the system is a wheel speed sensor, which constantly monitors the front wheel’s turning speed, and from this, the algorithms in the control unit calculate whether braking could potentially cause the front wheel to lock up. If so, the system will reduce the brake pressure, thus preventing loss of directional stability and road holding.
“The widespread use of ABS for motorcycles and scooters could contribute considerably to reducing the number of serious injuries and fatalities”, explained Lothar Kienle, head of motorcycle development at Continental’s vehicle dynamics business unit.