Ntsako Mthethwa
2 minute read
30 Sep 2016
9:35 am

BMW releases airbag motorbike jacket

Ntsako Mthethwa

The technology is adopted from the current Alpinestars Tech-Air system, requiring no bike-mounted sensors.

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Airbags have been credited with being the biggest lifesaver since the invention of the seatbelt and now they are slowly coming to motorcycles and riders.

It’s no joke, the German manufacturer explains it’s “an advanced airbag system offering comprehensive upper body protection and the freedom to ride a motorbike in both on- and off-road situations.”

bmw-airbag-jacket (2)

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The technology is adopted from the current Alpinestars Tech-Air system, requiring no bike-mounted sensors.

The system employs a sophisticated algorithm that “detects imminent danger with the greatest precision and inflates the full upper body airbag to provide a highly effective crash protection system ahead of the first impact.”

The new textile riding jacket is designed to interconnect with the Alpinestars airbag system vest and is an essential component for the system to be fully operational. It offers instantaneous inflatable upper body protection to the back, kidneys, chest and shoulders – the most exposed areas in a crash.

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This jacket is the first safety product to be launched under an exclusive agreement between BMW Motorrad and Alpinestars and is available for both female and male customers in different colours.

Key features of BMW Motorrad Street Air by Alpinestars

  • Full airbag inflation in 25 milliseconds for protection during crash impacts and loss-of-control situations when riding but also in stand-still situation – for example, a rear impact while waiting at traffic lights.
  • Function is independently of the need for sensors to be installed on the bike and the subsequent need to link a specific motorcycle to the airbag system.
  • Immediately ready for use and no time is wasted in setting up electronic pairing between rider and/or passenger and motorcycle. Rider can easily switch between motorbikes without reconfiguring or reinitialising.
  • Placing sensors near to the body means the airbag system can be used on road or for off-road adventure-touring.
  • No need to deactivate the system if leaving the road for off-road trails or to stop in between to change settings. Changing surfaces while adventure-touring therefore presents no problem.
  • System is protected by a durable and water-resistant casing which, when worn under a compatible outer jacket, means the airbag system is fully weatherproof.

Details and local availability are yet to be announced, for now you can check out the video from Alpinestars of the jacket in action during the testing process.