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December 26, 2005

World's First Production Motorcycle Airbag

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Coming next year from Honda, as an option over and above the Gold Wing's $22,800 list price.

Not to fret: you get plenty of standard features for your money.

Wrote Paul A. Eisenstein in the January, 2006 issue of Wired magazine, "Sensors on the front forks detect an accident and trigger the bag mounted between the handlebars. In a head–on crash, the fabric bubble absorbs some of the rider's forward momentum. He'll still probably wind up on the pavement, but, hey, it beats flying through the air like a human lawn dart."

I guess Honda didn't dare float the eminently sensible idea of a seat belt or harness: motorcycle drivers have a hard enough time accepting the wisdom of wearing a helmet.

December 26, 2005 at 09:01 AM | Permalink


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Comments

Not sue if this is out on the market yet, just curious if there was a crash test dummy test on it and what the impact was.

Posted by: Ajlouny | Aug 19, 2009 12:52:42 AM

As to clifyt's comments above, take a look at this from www.motorcyclecrusier.com:

http://motorcyclecruiser.com/accessoriesandgear/helmquiz/

Still think helmet's aren't a good idea? Maybe it's true that loud pipes really do save lives ... not!!

Posted by: Rob R | Jan 6, 2006 12:12:58 AM

"Before I was a rider, I always thought guys without helmets were morons that just wanted to look cool."

This ten-year (100K+ miles, year-round) rider still thinks that, especially after continuing to read all the research on the subject that he can.

And yes, Honda's airbag offering, as well as items like the [URL=http://www.webbikeworld.com/r2/airbag-jacket/motorcycle-airbag-jacket.htm]Moto Air[/URL] "air bag jacket" (no affiliation) is causing a lot of debate amongst the motorcycle press. I can't wait to see in what real-world circumstances they'll prove to be effective. Personally, I think it'd be unsafe to be attached to a motorcycle in almost any scenario, but in a head-on collision I can see the value of an airbag.

Posted by: John K. | Dec 27, 2005 2:00:06 PM

Having been flipped off of my '78 Goldwing (I stripped it down a LONG time ago...I never understood the idea of a bike that needed to look and act like a car on two wheels -- but it was my dad's bike so I kept it around and it was built pretty damn well)...but having flipped off of mine -- I could see how this is right. The last accident I had, someone dropped a load of lumber in front of me on my way to chicago and there was no way to avoid it. As my bike was flipping end over end I sat on the side of the road wondering how I'm going to get the gravel out of my ass, but beyond that -- I was pretty fine. If I were attached? I probably would have looked just like my bike -- several pieces.

As for the wisdom of the helmet? Before I was a rider, I always thought guys without helmets were morons that just wanted to look cool. When I first started riding, I wore it everywhere. After a while, I realized as much as it would save me, it also almost cost me several near misses...you lose a good deal of your stereo hearing with these one (and half helmets are next to worthless...so thats not a happy medium). In town -- I *RARELY* wear my helmet -- you lose peripheral vision and the ability to hear others coming up beside up...and for some reason, bike attract idiots. Drivers treat you as a second class citizen and don't care about invading the same space they would have never gotten near in a car (yeah, some bikers do this too...I don't know how many times I've seen bikers cruising up the yellow lines make another lane for themselves on the highway).

But all in all, without the helmet -- a lot more reaction time so you don't need to get into an accident that you'll need the helmet. With one -- sure, your head will be safe, but you are much more likely to find an accident that will injure yourself perminently anyways.

BTW -- on the highway -- I always wear one (and not surprisingly, I've never had an accident where I wasn't wearing one).

Posted by: clifyt | Dec 26, 2005 12:59:37 PM

I think in motorcycle accidents, unlike car accidents, you generally want to be separated from your vehicle as soon as possible. It's a damn great chunk of metal sliding and/or tumbling down the road, and such things are not healthy to be near, let alone attached to.

If a bike low-sides, a person strapped onto it would very probably lose a leg (it happens anyway, when people get trapped between their bike and the road). If a bike high-sides, there might well be little left of a person strapped onto it _except_ their legs, which would in this situation probably end up in two quite different locations.

Being flipped off a high-siding bike is, of course, no picnic, but it beats being splatted head-first into the road by all of the thing's weight and most of your previous speed when the bike completes its rotation.

Posted by: Daniel Rutter | Dec 26, 2005 10:52:08 AM

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