BMW just presented the world an artifact that envisions what the future of human transport will look like. This involves a motorcycle concept that could purportedly allow its rider to experience unprecedented freedom and a great escape.
The motorcycle is being called BMW Motorrad Vision Next 100. That is quite a mouthful, but it has been smothered with ultra-advanced artificial intelligence technology so that people would probably not care one whit about the name. It is said to be so smart that its driver will no longer need a helmet and protective clothing.
BMW phrased its intelligent driver assistance technology as something that links the rider, the bike and the outside world. Here, the driver is still in control but the AI anticipates what lies ahead and alerts the user what actions to take.
"By collating the data it has gathered, it can suggest ideal lines and banking angles, or warn riders of hazards ahead," Holger Hampf, head of User Experience unit at BMW, said in a press statement.
The Motorrad's AI is reminiscent of an actual technology for motorcycles that BMW launched recently. It is called "Intelligent Emergency Call (IEC)" system that is able to quickly summon help to the scene of a road accident or emergency.
In addition, the bike has its own self-balancing capability, righting itself independently while running and even when stationary.
"Normally, when we develop a motorcycle, we tend to think 5 to 10 years in advance," Edgar Heinrich, head of Design at BMW Motorrad, said. "On this occasion, we looked much further ahead and found the experience especially exciting."
The interaction between the rider and the motorcycle transpires through a dedicated visor. It is a smart eyewear that provides the user with important information in addition to the more rudimentary protection against wind and dirt while the bike speeds away.
Aside from the cutting-edge AI technology, Motorrad also boasts of technical specifications that make it stand out and truly a BMW vehicle. For example, it is outfitted with the iconic frame triangle seen in R32, BMW's first motorcycle. There is also the power train, which was designed after the BMW boxer engine.
The overall look of the Motorrad is also quite cool. It has a very minimalist design language, marrying the future with tradition. As the vehicle borrowed traditional elements from BMW's vehicle stable, it also integrated details that indicate futuristic ergonomics, appearing as a naked bike with fine and smooth angles. BMW calls the design theme as contemporary reinterpretation of classic BMW detail.
One should note that Motorrad is part of the on-going BMW Vision Next series, which involves the exhibition of various concept vehicles that constitute the company's vision of its future. The series will debut car concepts of its brands such as the Rolls-Royce, Mini and BMW in different cities around the world. The BMW Motorrad, for instance, was unveiled in an old airplane hangar in California.