published at 14.10.2011, 12:18
Rider equipment

Constant innovation for added rider protection

We are all aware of our vulnerability as riders, but as any motorcyclist will tell you, the rewards of our two-wheeled passion far outweigh the risks. Furthermore, the risks themselves can be greatly reduced by adapting your riding technique to the conditions, using a motorcycle equipped with active safety features (such as ABS and traction control) and, importantly, wearing the best riding equipment you can afford.

As one of the pioneers in rider safety, BMW Motorrad has for many years been making motorcycle clothing and equipment that offers the highest levels of comfort and protection. When you’re enjoying exploring the power of an S 1000 RR on a track day, you don’t want to think about whether your leather suit is as high-performance as your motorcycle. Likewise, when riding your GS, RT or GT through heavy rain or sleet on a slippery mountain road, all your focus should be on the road ahead, rather than wondering if your riding kit will help keep you protected, should an accident occur.

Whatever and wherever you ride, there is a comprehensive choice of BMW Rider Equipment to suit, and rest assured that whatever the style of the clothing, there is safety and technical performance already ‘built-in’. Naturally, only the finest materials are used, such as Schoeller® Keproshield in the Streetguard 3 suit – a protective composite specially designed for motorcycling which has brought about a 20% improvement in abrasion, impact, tear and frictional heat resistance over predecessor products.

Of course, nobody likes to think about the possible effects of a motorcycle accident, but minimising the forces of a collision that are transmitted to the rider is critical – this is why NP protectors feature in just about every BMW Motorrad riding suit. BMW Motorrad has worked with specialists in bio-mechanics, medicine and accident research to develop a new and even safer generation of protectors. Despite being extremely soft and flexible, they provide a level of protection that’s second to none, absorbing the impact by moulding themselves to vulnerable parts of the body and also providing significantly better coverage of the joints, combining active safety with high comfort levels.

The lower the residual force transmitted to the body, the more effective the protector is. Put another way, a good protector should absorb as much impact energy as possible, and then release it gradually so the level of force to which the wearer is subjected does not spike. The new NP protectors from BMW Motorrad do this between 200 and 700% more effectively than competitor products – and comfortably outperform the requirements of the CE standard.

An item like the BMW Motorrad sleeveless protector jacket with NP back protector is among the few products on the market that fulfil the higher performance level 2 criteria. It’s also the only certified back protector currently available that also protects the collarbone. And up until now, even the best motorcycling equipment has left the top of the back and neck unprotected, but the Neck Brace system – developed by BMW Motorrad and KTM in conjunction with a team of experts – finally remedies this. It minimises the risk of damage around the neck, cervical vertebrae and collarbone, yet the rider has no loss of freedom of movement while wearing it – on or off-road.

Comfort is an important safety feature in itself of course, because it allows riders to concentrate on the road ahead, which is particularly important in critical situations. From a rider’s perspective, adjustability and fit allows you to forget about these passive safety items, knowing that they are there, should they be required.

As you’d expect, every inch of the rider is taken care of, from head to toe. A wide range of gloves offer a variety of built-in safety features, such as Kevlar/carbon shells, impact-absorbing Suprotect foam, Cordura knuckles, double leather in vulnerable areas, and even integrated rubber visor wipers to ensure the view ahead remains clear. As you’d expect, boots also cover all types of riding conditions, and can incorporate everything from torsion and metatarsal control systems designed to prevent injuries to the vulnerable feet bones, to top-quality off-road Enduro boots with shafts wide enough to accommodate leg braces.

Ultimately though, the idea is that you leave the research, testing and development of your motorcycle clothing in the capable hands of BMW Motorrad – and just enjoy the ride. After all, safety is the number one priority across the Rider Equipment range, with only the finest quality materials used, while work continues behind the scenes to further develop existing technology and create new fabrics. All BMW Motorrad products are designed to offer the ultimate in comfort, safety and durability, because after all, a comfortable rider is a safer rider.

For comprehensive information and online product brochures on all the latest items in the BMW Motorrad Rider Equipment range, click here.