For years, I’ve been laboring the point that motorcycle design and technology follows that of cars. And often with a lag of many years. The finances of the motorcycle industry are very little compared to the automobile world, which is why for many years the two arguably most innovative two-wheel companies are Honda and BMW. Both have car divisions that can bankroll their less profitable motorcycle siblings, and cross-pollinate a whole bunch of technology that they could otherwise simply not afford.
It’s also why I was one of the few who openly applauded Audi’s takeover of Ducati. And me, a 1098owner, no less. Has Ducati lost its Italian flair in the interim, as everyone feared? Nope. But their financial is certainly more secure.
Well, despite this inspired wisdom on motorcycle hand-me-downs, things might be about to change. Road transportation is at a turning point, after which, cars are going to be very different beasts than the ones we’ve grown up with. Some of the latest car design studies have no windows, because nobody will need to see where they’re going. Afew interiors offer swiveling seats around a central table, so the occupants can have a business meeting, or share in a friendly family environment while hurting down the highway. One recent BMW study featured bookshelves no less, illustrating the company’s confidence in accident-free autonomous motoring.