Automotive technology is advancing by leaps and bounds on a daily basis. Take adaptive cruise control for example. It is a common feature on many cars today, in India and abroad. But this particular feature still hasn't made its way to motorcycles yet. Although, some motorcycles in India and abroad do get standard cruise control. In a line, adaptive cruise control uses a radar based sensor to determine a safe distance from vehicles moving in front of you. Few motorcycle manufacturers such as Ducati have already confirmed that it is working on similar technology. And now, it is Austrian manufacturer KTM who has revealed a working prototype of a couple of radar based technologies.
KTM is working on radar based adaptive cruise control and blind spot detection as well. Although, the vice president of R&D, KTM, Gerald Matschl, has said that these technologies are still at least two to three of years away from being offered as standard or optional features on production motorcycle.
KTM did showcase the technologies in question. A working model of the KTM 1290 Super Adventure was fitted with sensors at front and rear, with Matschl himself aboard. The bike was made to run behind a people carrier. The bike managed to keep a constant gap between itself and the vehicle in front with Matschl taking his foot off the rear brake lever and right hand off the throttle.
The sensor up front is activated once cruise control is engaged at any speed above 30 kmph. As the bike moves forward, the sensor picks up the vehicle moving ahead of it and feeds constant inputs to the bike, keeping a gap. KTM is also setting up the technology in such a way that the bike will be able to react to emergency situations much faster than a rider's reflexes.
KTM is also testing and developing blind spot detection tech wherein the rear view mirrors are fitted with LED lights along with rear facing sensors. These warn the rider of incoming traffic from behind. There will be a warning sign on the instrument console as well.