Mobility Solutions

Safety technology for emerging markets Bosch develops front ABS for motorcycles

  • Cost-optimized solutions especially for small motorcycles
  • Improved safety through front-wheel control
  • Entry-level version of Generation 9 ABS for motorcycles
  • Production start 2013
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  • November 12, 2012
  • Mobility Solutions
  • Press releases
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press release

Two-wheelers dominate traffic in Asia's cities. Without the crumple zone of a car, however, the risk of injury for riders in an accident is much higher. Bosch has developed an antilock braking system which is specially adapted to the low-cost motorcycles and scooters common there. It is based on the Generation 9 braking control system for motorcycles, but it has only one hydraulic brake channel, which controls the front wheel. “The new front ABS offers a great improvement in safety at a low cost,” says Gerhard Steiger, president of the Chassis Systems Control division. “ABS can reduce the number of accidents with injuries and fatalities by a quarter.” Known as the ABS 9M light, this system is currently under development in the Bosch center for motorcycle safety in Japan, in cooperation with an Indian motorcycle manufacturer. Series production will start in 2013.

When a wheel on a motorcycle locks up, this invariably results in a critical situation. And where a locked rear wheel can often be unlocked by releasing the brake, such a reaction nearly always comes too late in the event of a locked front wheel, and it is practically inevitable that the rider will take a spill. Weight shifts forward during braking, and so deceleration takes place primarily through the front wheel. This explains why in many Asian countries, even the rear wheels of motorcycles with engine displacements of 250 ccm and above are braked by a mechanical cable brake. “Regulating braking pressure at the hydraulically braked front wheel prevents locking and achieves maximum deceleration, and so greatly increases stability,” says Dr. Wolfgang Hiller, regional president of the Bosch Chassis Systems Control division in Japan.

High-performance ABS generation forms the basis
The new ABS 9M light is a cost-effective entry-level version of the Bosch Generation 9 braking control system for motorcycles. The hydraulic unit comprises two control valves, a storage chamber, and a pump element. As is the case with more powerful ABS systems, the electric motor that drives the return pump is mounted here, as is the control unit – in this case a circuit board. The wheel-specific reference velocity is calculated by the system on the basis of speed information relayed by a sensor in the front wheel. For the highest possible stability during braking, the wheel-specific reference velocity is continuously adapted to the actual vehicle speed. More precise braking control is possible if a second sensor is installed on the rear wheel. With this setup, deceleration rates match those of the basic 2-channel system, and counteract any lifting of the rear wheel. Motorcycle manufacturers can optionally integrate an on-off switch.

The software for the new front ABS has been optimized for the lower power segment. For larger, more powerful motorcycles, Bosch offers the ABS base and ABS plus systems, which control both wheels and offer additional optional functions. At the top of the range, there is the ABS enhanced system. Its integrated eCBS composite brake function always brakes both wheels, even when the driver only applies one of the brakes.

Mobility Solutions is the largest Bosch Group business sector. In 2015, its sales came to 41.7 billion euros, or 59 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). The company generated sales of 70.6 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 118 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.”

Further information is available online at and,

PI7922 - November 12, 2012

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