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BMW presents new concepts: Laser headlights, heads-up helmet display, at Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas

@BMWMotorradCA | @CES | BMW Motorrad will be displaying two innovations at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas on 6-9 January 2016. Laser light for motorcycles and a helmet with a head-up display will be presented, setting new standards of motorcycle safety, along with a technical outlook of how they may be employed in series models of the future.

BMW K1600GTL concept vehicle with BMW Motorrad laser light.
See and be seen has always been one of the central axioms of safe motorcycling, for which reason BMW Motorrad has long since dedicated itself to the continued development and optimisation of motorcycle lighting units. Over the years, this has seen the introduction of adaptive headlights for riding in curves, LED daytime running light and dynamic brake light in BMW motorcycles. And like so often, the development was able to benefit from synergy effects with BMW automobiles.

In the case of the K1600GTL concept vehicle presented here, the BMW Motorrad laser light is derived from a design from the automobile division of the BMW Group. The innovative laser technology is already available in the new BMW 7 Series as well as in the BMW i8. BMW Motorrad has now adapted this technology – which is as established as it is forward-looking – for motorcycling applications. Not only do laser light headlamps generate a particularly bright and pure-white light, but they even achieve a high-beam range of up to 600 metres, which is double that of conventional headlights. The safety of night-time riding has now increased significantly as a result, due not only to the increased range but also to the precise illumination of the road. Moreover, the laser technology has a very long service life, thanks to its compact, robust and maintenance-free construction.

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BMW Motorrad laser light has been incorporated in the K1600GTL concept vehicle as a feasibility test. BMW Motorrad is testing the use of this headlamp technology in series vehicles in the course of its preliminary development.

At the moment, the technology is still too cost-intensive for use in motorcycles. However, it is expected that the economies of scale resulting from their large-scale use in the automobile industry will result in a price structure with a clear downward trend. Its use in motorcycles could might then be imaginable in the medium term.

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Head-up display helmet: road information always in your sights.
In road traffic, it only takes a fraction of a second or a brief distraction to put the rider in a dangerous situation. In 2003, BMW became the first European automobile manufacturer to introduce a head-up display as optional equipment for BMW automobiles.

The BMW head-up display projects necessary or desirable traffic or vehicle information directly into the rider's field of view, allowing him to maintain constant observation of the traffic on the road, with no distraction. This would appear even more important with motorcycles than it is with cars, because it can sometimes only take a brief visual distraction to put the rider in a critical road situation.

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With a view to offering this technology in motorcycles of the future, a pre-development process was conducted in which a BMW Motorrad helmet was fitted with an innovative head-up display function. This enables the projection of data directly into the rider's field of view. This means that the rider no longer has to glance at the instrument panel and he is able to concentrate fully and without distraction on the road traffic.

All displays are freely programmable; ideally, to provide the best-possible support for rider safety, only information that is helpful and relevant to the current situation should be displayed to the rider at any given moment.

Safety and comfort information for an even more emotionally charged riding experience.

The display options comprise safety-relevant information, for instance data relating to the technical status of the motorcycle, such as tyre pressure, oil level and fuel level, travel speed and selected gear, speed limit and road sign recognition, plus warnings of impending dangers.

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By means of the future V2V (vehicle-to-vehicle) communication, it might also be possible to display information in real time, for example to give due warning of any suddenly impending hazards.

Moreover, the head-up display also allows the visualisation of content designed to increase rider comfort. An example would be the planned route along with navigation advice prior to commencing a journey.

The helmet with head-up display also offers interesting possibilities for making the highly emotional experience of motorcycle riding even more intensive and at the same time safer. For instance, an action camera pointing forwards, located inside the helmet, can record video footage of the journey directly from the helmet. A second camera oriented towards the rear could at some point in the future perform the function of a 'digital rear-view mirror'. And last but not least, this technology also enables the visualisation of other riders in a motorcycle group. This enables the rider to see where his companions are at any given moment.

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The helmet, which is also fitted with an integrated mini-computer and loudspeakers, is controlled from the left-hand handlebar fittings using the BMW Motorrad multicontroller. As well as operating the camera, this allows the rider to comfortably select the information he requires.

The necessary information display technology can be integrated in existing helmets, without affecting either wearer comfort or rider safety. The operating time of the system with the two replaceable batteries is around five hours.

BMW Motorrad wants to develop this innovative technology to series-production level within the next few years, thus adding a further safety feature to its already wide range of rider equipment.

Tuesday, 05 January 2016 12:12 Published in Industry News


Monday Super Hooligans of the Day

Super Hooligans support heat race action during the Superprestigio of the Americas Short Track event at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, with the # 66 Harley-Davidson of Shaun Guardado of Long Beach, CA.; the # 4 Harley-Davidson of Travis Hayes of Encinitas, CA., and the # 23 Indian of Brendon Lutes, also of Long Beach, CA.

Sunday, 22 November 2015 11:16 Published in News


Non Flat Trackers Test in Vegas

With the arena’s track preparation complete and the Airfence in place, non-Flat Track Superprestigio of the Americas competitors got a couple of hours of surface testing and practice on Thursday evening, November 19 at the Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas.

On Friday evening, November 20, the 13th and deciding round of the 2015 American Flat Track Championship takes place at the same venue, while the next night features the inaugural Yamaha-sponsored Superprestigio of The Americas. 

Both events take place on a custom built, indoor hockey rink-sized (about .10 of a mile in length) track at the Orleans Hotel and Casino.

Non flat track racers taking part in the discipline-crossing first ever North American Superprestigio event will be at a disadvantage, partly because they do not regularly compete on dirt ovals and mostly because they are not part of the AMA Pro National wrap-up on Friday night.  So a little test and tune was a welcome and much appreciated surprise.

With most of the top flat trackers watching from the sidelines, the non-oval group showed well, and demonstrated that the surface should be good for competition.  Track designer and Flat Track legend Chris Carr made big efforts to ensure that passing was possible, and the initial, non-competition outing on the Orleans oval showed promise.

Maybe the fastest, unofficially, of the Pros to try the track was Larry Pegram on the Foremost Insurance Honda single.  Out of work since the works Buell team dropped out of World Superbike early in 2015 due to issues with the parent company, former flat track star Pegram was in confident form.

Attracting the most attention was a charging Roger Lee Hayden aboard the Yoshimura Suzuki RMZ450, with most of the riders trying to follow every time Hayden took to the course for one of the many brief sessions.  Back in 2002, Hayden and his two brothers, Tommy and Nicky, swept the AMA Pro National Short Track podium in Springfield, Ill.

Top European was MotoGP ace and 2012 Moto2 World Champ Toni Elias of Spain, 32. A veteran of the Spanish Superprestigio that started the us vs them flat track spectacular craze, Elias looked quick and fairly consistent, shaking of a couple of minor tumbles on the stop-and-go layout.

Action for the Flat Track Experts starts on Friday at 3 PM local time, with two hours of timed practice.  After that, there will be Heat and Semi races for the GNC1 and GNC2 categories.  Canadian interest will focus on newly crowned Flat Track Canada Champ Doug Lawrence aboard the John Briggs Motorsports/Town Moto Honda. 

The Inside Motorcycles web site will feature coverage of the Lawrence effort both nights.

On hand to watch the test, Lawrence explained that he was “impressed with the track, they seem to have really done a good job preparing the surface – it has plenty of moisture, and that should help over a night.”

“They’re trying to make it so you can pass, race each other.  I don’t know if what we watched tonight will be what we see in the races tomorrow night, but right now those guys know more than we do.”     

Thursday, 19 November 2015 22:53 Published in News


Indian Motorcycle to sponsor 'RSD Super Hooligan' race at Superprestigio of the Americas

@indianmotocycle • @RolandSands • Indian Motorcycle®, America’s first motorcycle company, today announced it has stepped up as the title sponsor for the upcoming “RSD Super Hooligan” flat track race in Las Vegas. The street-bike based race takes place indoors on a short track at the Orleans Hotel & Casino the evening of November 21, and is presented in partnership with Roland Sands Design and AMA Pro Flat Track in conjunction with the “Superprestigio of the Americas” race.    The winner of the Super Hooligan race will receive a new 2016 Indian Scout – making the Super Hooligan race a bit more competitive than the average weekend amateur event.

Hooligan racing is traced back to the 1930s, at a time when legendary Indian Motorcycle dealer Clarence “Pappy” Hoel began organizing regional hill climb and flat track motorcycle races in and around Sturgis, SD. Hoel was a founding members of the Jackpine Gypsies Motorcycle Club, and he and the Gypsies are credited with starting the now world famous Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in 1938. Indian Motorcycle’s rich history in racing dates back to its inception with records in every racing category, including land speed, dirt track, transcontinental racing and venues like Daytona and the Isle of Man. In 1911 the Federation of American Motorcyclists published the records for 126 different categories of racing and different distances, and of those 126 racing records, Indian owned all 126.

Hooligan racing is a throwback to a post-war era where riders took virtually any available motorcycle to race in the spirit of seeking adrenaline and enjoying the comradery. Today the flat track Hooligan racing category is rapidly gaining in popularity with riders of all ages and experience levels because it brings the fun back into a less structured environment where any rider can race virtually any motorcycle. “Framers” or custom race chassis machines are not allowed in the class. It’s designed to allow racers to lightly modify an existing street chassis for racing action, a familiar situation for the world famous Indian Scout.

The company also announced it has partnered with Roland Sands Design to build and race five custom Hooligan racers based on the Indian Scout. The custom Hooligan Scouts will race in the RSD Super Hooligan event in Las Vegas, with a world-class team of riders that includes Roland Sands himself, Red Bull/KTM stunt rider Aaron Colton, plus some surprise guest riders. These new custom motorcycles will be revealed to the media on Friday, November 20 during the International Motorcycle Shows press event in Long Beach, CA.

“The Scout is a great machine upon which to base a custom bike with modern rider friendly performance. The engine and chassis are rock solid and don’t need a lot of work, so DIY customizers can focus on the aesthetic modifications,” said Roland Sands.  “It has been a blast designing and building these custom Indian Scout Hooligan bikes and after a quick test run at the local flat track I feel we have a competitive bike that will rip on the track.”

“It is an honor for Indian Motorcycle to sponsor the Super Hooligan event in partnership with Roland Sands Design and the folks at the Superprestigio of the Americas,” said Steve Menneto, President of Motorcycles at Polaris Industries. “Given the incredible racing heritage of the Indian Scout in our DNA, it’s really exciting to have five amazing Roland Sands custom Indian Scouts racing. It’s going to be a great event.”

For more information on the Superprestigio of the Americas visit http://www.superprestigio.com/.   Fans can enjoy live streaming of the event on www.fanschoice.tv.

To join the IMS Press Day on Nov 20, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Tuesday, 10 November 2015 12:52 Published in Industry News