Yamaha plans to have an automated self-riding motorcycle available within decade. The Japanese motorcycle company has already run tests with their Motobot, a robot riding a special motorcycle with outrigger wheels which they claim will beat Valentino Rossi’s lap times on several race tracks around the world later this year.
Most car companies are already testing self-drive cars and believe they will have them available for the market in the next few years. However, Yamaha chief executive Hiroyuki Yanagi has told the press it would take at least a decade before autonomous technology was available on a commercial basis for motorcycles.
‘Our current target is how to assist the rider,’ Mr. Hiroyuki Yanagi said. ‘The rider can focus more on safety if the machine handling becomes autonomous and artificial intelligence can be used for course selection,’ he said. Yamaha has invested up to 20 million US Dollar in a Californian company working on autonomous vehicles, robotics and drones and in February, invested 2 million US Dollar in a US start-up called Veniam for its connected vehicle know-how. Technological rider intervention is already available with ABS brakes, dynamic suspension adjustment, traction control and emergency braking assistance.