Motorcycle technology business is booming
Bosch aims to achieve sales of one billion euros (£794 million) in motorcycle market
Driven by solutions for more efficiency and safety
- Bosch Two-Wheeler and Powersports unit has tripled its workforce in under a year.
- Bosch side view assist is the first assistance system for motorcycles.
- More than 160 million motorised two-wheelers will be built worldwide in 2021.
- Since 1995, Bosch has manufactured more than two million motorcycle ABS units.
The Bosch Two-Wheeler and Powersports unit is continuing to gain momentum in the global motorcycle market. Since the business unit was founded in Japan in April 2015, sales of motorcycle technology have risen by more than 20 percent. By comparison, production volumes for motorised two-wheelers have grown by less than 5 percent over the same period.
The Two-Wheeler and Powersports unit is the leading supplier of motorcycle safety technology; its side view assist is the world’s first assistance system for motorcycles. The business unit also supplies efficient fuel injection technology, smart connectivity solutions and modern display instruments for motorcycles.
The unit currently has 130 associates worldwide – three times as many as a year ago. It can also draw on a worldwide network of several thousand engineers, as well as on the manufacturing capacity of the Mobility Solutions business sector. The unit is well positioned for the future. “In 2020, we want to achieve sales of one billion euros (£794 million) in motorcycle technology,” says the Bosch management board member Dr. Dirk Hoheisel. In the future, Bosch will generate more than half these sales in Asia.
Almost 90 percent of all motorcycles are produced in Asia
Studies indicate that by 2021, the annual global production of two-wheelers should surpass 160 million – roughly one-third more than today. Almost 90 percent of these will be built in China, India, and southeast Asia. They will predominantly be mopeds with up to 250 cc displacement – the most common form of transport across much of Asia.
These vehicles also face the challenge posed by stricter emissions legislation. In Asia, many two-wheelers with internal-combustion engines are still equipped with outdated carburettor technology. In contrast, Bosch offers its electronically controlled fuel-injection system, which can reduce fuel consumption by up to 16 percent depending on the situation. This is Bosch’s contribution to reducing emissions in countries such as India.
Desire for efficiency and safety as a boost for business
Along with a requirement for more efficiency, demand for increased motorcycle safety is growing in emerging markets. In Thailand and Indonesia, for example, some 21,000 people die in motorcycle accidents each year. ABS can prevent one-quarter of all motorcycle accidents that result in casualties. The antilock braking system stops the wheels from locking up, which means the rider remains in control of the motorcycle while braking. This enables riders to react more quickly and without fear in a dangerous situation. Worldwide, more and more countries are promoting motorcycle ABS. Throughout the EU, all newly sold motorised two-wheelers with more than 125 cc displacement must be fitted with an antilock braking system as of 2017. Starting in October 2018, Japan will be mandating ABS for new type approvals for motorcycles with more than 125 cc. Brazil and Taiwan, too, have already passed laws mandating ABS in the future. The issue is also on the political agenda in India and the United States.
A product for each market: from ABS to side view assist
Since 1995, Bosch has manufactured more than two million motorcycle ABS units. This year the company is releasing ABS 10, a variant that is designed specifically to meet the requirements of emerging markets. With its compact dimensions and weighing just 450 grams, this system is easier for manufacturers to integrate into mopeds for price-sensitive customers. “Safety cannot be a question of cost. We are bringing our ABS technology to all classes and markets,” Hoheisel says.
For high-performance motorbikes, demand for which is strongest in Europe, Japan, and North America, Bosch developed MSC motorcycle stability control – a kind of ESP for motorcycles – in 2013. By monitoring two-wheeler parameters such as lean angle, the system can instantaneously adjust its electronic braking and acceleration interventions to suit the riding status. This prevents the bike from lowsiding or righting itself when braking in bends. But development doesn’t stop there: with side view assist, Bosch has launched the world’s first assistance system for motorised two-wheelers. When changing lanes, the assistant uses ultrasonic sensors to check for danger in the areas on either side of the bike – areas which are hard for the rider to see.
Connected motorcycles are even safer
The future of the motorcycle is not only safe and clean but also connected. Bosch has two motorcycle connectivity solutions in its portfolio. First, the ICC integrated connectivity cluster is a rider information system that connects motorcycles and smartphones and can be used to operate apps. Second, Bosch uses its CCU connectivity control unit to connect motorcycles with the cloud. This makes it possible to implement functions such as eCall, the automatic emergency call service. If the motorcycle is involved in an accident, eCall automatically places an emergency call, ensuring help arrives more quickly. eCall is not yet mandatory for motorcycles in the EU, but from April 2018 it will be mandatory for all new type approvals for cars and light trucks up to 3.5 metric tonnes. The CCU can also provide riders with useful information on issues such as potential danger spots on the roads and can help track down a stolen motorbike.
Related link: www.bosch-motorcycle.com
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Mobility Solutions is the largest Bosch Group business sector. According to preliminary figures, its 2015 sales came to 41.7 billion euros, or 60 percent of total group sales. This makes the Bosch Group one of the leading automotive suppliers. The Mobility Solutions business sector combines the group’s expertise in three mobility domains – automation, electrification, and connectivity – and offers its customers integrated mobility solutions. Its main areas of activity are injection technology and powertrain peripherals for internal-combustion engines, diverse solutions for powertrain electrification, vehicle safety systems, driver-assistance and automated functions, technology for user-friendly infotainment as well as vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication, repair-shop concepts, and technology and services for the automotive aftermarket. Bosch is synonymous with important automotive innovations, such as electronic engine management, the ESP anti-skid system, and common-rail diesel technology.
The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. It employs roughly 375,000 associates worldwide (as of December 31, 2015). According to preliminary figures, the company generated sales of more than 70 billion euros in 2015. Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 440 subsidiaries and regional companies in some 60 countries. Including sales and service partners, Bosch’s global manufacturing and sales network covers some 150 countries. The basis for the company’s future growth is its innovative strength. Bosch employs 55,800
associates in research and development at roughly 115 locations across the globe. The Bosch Group’s strategic objective is to deliver innovations for a connected life. Bosch improves quality of life worldwide with products and services that are innovative and spark enthusiasm. In short, Bosch creates technology that is “Invented for life.”