Vehicle-To-Vehicle Comms Eyed As Life-Saving Tech For E-Bike Riders

As more and more alternative transport solutions emerge in the urban setting, safety has become more important than ever before. This is particularly evident in a lot of the new electric bicycles we’re seeing today, with advanced electronic safety features we could only dream of a decade or so ago. With that being said, several companies are working together to provide vulnerable road users an even safer experience.

V2X, or vehicle-to-vehicle communication technology is seen as the future when it comes to hitting the road be it on four or two wheels. At present, industry giants from both the automotive and bicycle industries are working together to make the road a safer place for vulnerable road users. In total, there are 19 companies working together spanning the automotive, bicycle, and technology sectors, chief of which include the likes of Bosch, Shimano, Trek, and Audi.

The way V2X works is exactly the way you think it would. Cars and bikes would be fitted with modules that can communicate remotely with each other. As such, a cyclist approaching an intersection will be alerted via a notification either on their smartphone or their bike’s display, that a vehicle is approaching from the other direction. Likewise, the car driver will also be alerted about the presence of the cyclist, long before they’re in each other’s field of view. Of course, this is an ambitious project as the world’s streets are littered with millions of cars and bikes, but hey, big plans start with a single small step.

When it comes to safety, there’s a lot that needs to be done, especially when it comes to bikes and cars sharing the road. A report by Bosch states that more than 130,000 cycling-related injuries occur in the US alone. To address this, the Coalition for Cyclist Safety has been established, with the intention of launching Vulnerable Road User (VRU) connected technologies. Brands like Audi, Bosch, and Shimano believe that this is a potentially life-saving development.

Furthermore, Audi projects that up to 5.3 million vehicles in the US alone could have some sort of V2X technology integration by as early as 2025. Furthermore, communication with crosswalks, school zones, buses, and smartphones are forecasted to become a reality by 2030. With all that on the table, there’s one thing that’s necessary if this endeavor were to succeed: collaboration. Various players across multiple industries would have to work together to ensure a seamless connection between different technologies.

As Claus Fleischer, CEO of Bosch eBike Systems puts it, “V2X is another important contribution to safer cycling, since it could give cyclists digital visibility for other road users. However, this cannot be achieved by one company alone – it requires the cooperation of various players working on the topic across the board so that in the future no road user is excluded from the benefits V2X can provide. We are happy to be one of the founders and to partner on this important initiative.”

Sources: Bosch, Cycling Electric

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