Off-road ABS reality for Husqy

2011-12-13 08:23

BMW subsidiary Husqvarna is testing what will be the world’s first anti-lock brakes for off-road bikes.

The system will debut on the company’s flagship TE449 model in 2012.

To cut back on development time, Husqvarna is relying on the mechanicals of the ABS already in use by BMW on its S1000RR superbike. The new dual-channel system will have two modes to toggle between on and off-road use.


ABS hasn’t featured on off-road models until now because it is often necessary to lock the rear wheel on, say, gravel while avoiding lock-up on the front brakes which would mean instant loss of steering and a nasty fall.

No system had been able to cope with these contrasting demands but Husqvarna reckons the “slick” mode used on the BMW S1000RR’s ABS, which allows the rider to lock the rear wheel for brake drifts while ABS remains activated on the front wheel, is the perfect starting point.

The company says the Husqvarna system consists of two wheel sensors and their associated pulse wheels for detecting the rotational speeds of the front and rear wheels, an ABS pressure modulator, a hydraulic system and an electronic control unit.

“Due to the particular dynamic requirements of off-road racing, ABS regulation occurs solely at the front wheel. The rear wheel brake is not regulated, so the rider can deliberately lock the rear wheel."