Friday, July 18, 2014

BMW HP4 gets ‘ABS Pro’ cornering ABS

With ABS Pro on your BMW HP4, you can brake harder than ever before in fast corners, though don't expect the system to help you defy the basic laws of physics

Back in November 2012, KTM announced that the 1190 Adventure and Adventure R would be fitted with a Bosch-developed lean angle sensor, which would work in tandem with the bikes’ ABS and traction control systems. Now, BMW are following suit with their own ‘cornering ABS,’ which is being offered on the madly powerful, insanely fast S1000RR-based HP4.

BMW debuted what they call ‘race ABS’ on the S1000RR in 2009, which was ABS optimized for all-out sportsbikes. The latest iteration is ‘ABS Pro,’ which offers up ABS-supported braking while cornering at high speeds. Already available at BMW Motorrad dealerships, ABS Pro can be retrofitted to existing HP4s.

“While the Race ABS on the HP4 already provides a very high degree of safety when braking in a straight line, ABS Pro now goes a step further to offer increased safety when braking in the bends as well. Here, ABS Pro prevents the wheels from locking even when the brakes are applied quickly. This reduces abrupt changes in steering force on shock-braking manoeuvres and stops the motorcycle from rearing up unintentionally,” says a press note from BMW.

According to BMW, ABS Pro adapts ABS control to the motorcycle's banking angle, drawing on signals for roll rate, yaw rate and transverse acceleration, as provided by the sensor cluster which is already used for the HP4’s traction control and electronically adjustable suspension system.

“As the banking angle increases, the brake pressure gradient is limited more and more at the start of the braking manoeuvre. This means that the pressure build-up is slower. In addition to this, pressure modulation within the ABS control range is more even. The benefits of ABS Pro to the rider are a sensitive response and a high level of brake and ride stability together with the best possible deceleration in bends,” adds the press note from BMW.

ABS Pro works when the HP4 is in ‘Rain’ or ‘Sport’ modes, though it’s not supported in ‘Race’ and ‘Slick’ modes since ABS Pro is a street-oriented function and is not meant for the racetrack. “Although ABS Pro provides valuable support and is an enormous safety bonus for the rider when braking in corners, it can in no way redefine physical limits. It is still possible to exceed these limits due to mis-judgement or riding errors, which in extreme cases can result in a fall,” says the BMW press note.

Starting at the end of October this year, BMW HP4 owners can visit their nearest BMW Motorrad dealership and have ABS Pro retrofitted to their bike at a cost of 380 euros. Not a bad deal at all.

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