The highlight of the present state of ABS technology for motorcycles takes the form of the BMW Motorrad Race ABS developed for supersports applications.
For the diverse range of applications like wet surfaces (“Rain”), roads (“Sport”), racetracks with supersports tyres (“Race”), or racetrack with slicks (“Slick”), the rider can also push a button to choose from a set of engine characteristics tailored specifically to Race ABS. These operate with settings tailored to each of the different riding modes for the greatest possible safety over the whole range.
The BMW Motorrad Race ABS is an all new development that again is considerably lighter than the previous partially integral systems. Featuring a controller of only 1.5 kg and weighing it at only 2.5 kg in total, it is the ideal solution for installation in supersports motorcycles. Besides its low weight, the system is characterised above all by a regulation that has been improved even further.
This was made possible not only by the outstanding tuning, but also by the use of four pressure sensors in total that, in conjunction with highly complex rear wheel lift detection, can now differentiate better than before between a bump in the road and a blocking rear wheel.
Pressing the hand brake lever activates the two-rotor disc brake on the front wheel, whereas only a light braking force is applied to the rear wheel. The foot brake lever activates solely the rear wheel brake. In the riding modes “Race” and “Slick”, the rear wheel lift detection does not intervene in the rider's braking manoeuvres. In addition, the “Slick” mode allows particularly experienced riders to perform so called braking drifts without having to dispense with the benefits of a front wheel ABS.
A fourth pressure sensor in the front wheel circuit allows regulation of the front wheel brake pressure that is more refined and sensitive than the predecessor BMW integral ABS II. This is because the actual pressure values can be compared directly in the control and wheel circuit. This also means that the restriction orifices are no longer needed, resulting in the optimal pressure point and the perfect dosability. For special requirements, Race ABS can be deactivated separately.
Although the new system, like every other ABS, cannot redefine the constraints posed by the laws of physics, the new Race ABS provides the rider with invaluable support and an enormous boost to safety.