Let’s face it, top-range motorcycles are becoming more and more like cars. We’ve reached a point wherein the technology present in motorcycles seems to somewhat detract from the very essence of motorcycling—unadulterated freedom, the blast of the wind, and the raw sound of the engine. That’s just the way it is in a technology-driven world, and in reality, it seems like the motorcycle industry shows no signs of slowing down when it comes to next-level technology.
That being said, the latest tech trend to storm the two-wheeled world is that of adaptive cruise control. Cruise control, in its very essence, is nothing new, even in the world of motorcycles. In fact, most flagship 1,000cc bikes have them as standard. What is new, however, is adaptive cruise control, which, as the name suggests, autonomously adapts the bike’s speed depending on the conditions of the road. The way this works is either with the use of radar-guided technology, like what we see in KTM and Ducati, or a combination of radar and camera data, like what Kawasaki is developing for the upcoming Ninja H2 SX. This tech feature is especially useful for those who ride long distances on the highway, and can go a long way in keeping your hands fatigue-free, and your ride safe and relaxed.
Unsurprisingly, the Honda Gold Wing, one of the most popular grand-tourers in the entire world, is next in line for the radar treatment. It is quite possibly the most fitting contender for such tech, especially given the fact that it was built specifically to conquer the highway in speed and comfort. Patent photos of the adaptive cruise control setup of the upcoming Gold Wing have surfaced online, and it looks like it's almost certainly going to be rolled out on the next model update.
In equipping vehicles with radar systems, extra care has to be taken into the system’s housing. The sensitive gadgetry must be kept dry and cushioned from heavy impacts in order to ensure the reliable operation of its sophisticated electronics. To do this, Honda has encased the front radar beneath the Gold Wing’s gigantic front fairing somewhere behind the headlight assembly. Because the fairing is so large, Honda seems to have managed to come up with a way to conceal it such that it doesn’t disrupt the bike’s streamlined appearance. Furthermore, reports suggest that Honda will be fitting the Gold Wing with a rear-mounted radar system, too, for collision avoidance and blind spot monitoring systems.
If and when the new Gold Wing debuts with this intricate electronics system, we can expect it to be one of the safest and most convenient long-distance tourers out there. Of course, with all this tech, the price is sure to skyrocket from the already eye-watering price of P1,880,000. Then again, if you’re in the market for a Gold Wing, chances are this is the least of your concerns.