Newly established motorcycle maker Arc has launched its first model which it describes as the “world’s most advanced electric motorcycle”.
The Vector, unveiled at Milan’s EICMA Motorcycle show, comprises an intelligent rider jacket and Heads-Up Display (HUD) helmet, inspired by those of fighter pilots. The HUD helmet projects speedo, sat-nav and ancillary graphics onto the rider’s visor and a live rear-view camera lets the rider see what’s behind them.
“People ask me if the HUD could be distracting, but it’s designed to be the total opposite,” said Arc Vehicle Ltd Founder and CEO Mark Truman. “The tech frees you and your senses because the distractions have been removed. It allows you to concentrate on the road and your one-ness with the bike, to just enjoy the moment knowing the bike is looking out for you and the information you need is right in front of you.”
The bike’s jacket uses Human Machine Interface (HMI) technology which enables it to vibrate to alert the rider of a potential hazard such as a vehicle in the rider’s blind spot.
The jacket has three settings. Urban Mode focuses on safety, alerting the rider to dangers such as vehicles in their blind spot with a tap on the shoulder. Sports Mode gives the rider feedback on the bike’s dynamic position and parameters by taking G-Force related data from the Vector’s sensors and providing a graduated level of feedback. This tells the rider how close to the limit of the motorcycle’s capabilities the rider is. For example, the harder the rider brakes, the more feedback they receive. Euphoric Mode lets the rider play music as they ride and simulates the bass through the jacket’s amplifiers.
“We felt that there was more one could get out of motorcycling which no one was tapping into,” said Truman. “This is about using technology to strip back the experience of riding a bike, through the use of haptics and HUD. The helmet and jacket work in tandem with the Vector to remove distractions and emphasise the joy of riding.”
The Vector weighs 220kg, reaches 60mph in 3.1 and has a top speed of 120mph. The power cell produces 399 units of voltage, giving a range of about 200 miles in urban use and 120 miles on the highway.
Based in Coventry, England, at the heart of the UK’s global-leading High-Performance Automotive Engineering cluster, the idea for Arc was born out of Jaguar Land Rover’s “White Space” innovation lab, previously headed by Truman.