Motorcycle riders will one day have less to fear from behemoth semi-trailers, thanks to a couple of concept truck designs. (Read my views here on trucks sharing our roads.)
MAN has developed a Concept S truck that features a curved cab to deflect anything in its path from the vehicle during a collision, as opposed to pulling it beneath the cab.
That’s good news for vulnerable motorcyclists.
It also has larger windows and cameras in place of rear-view mirrors to reduce dangerous blind spots where motorcycles can be hidden.
The Volvo Vision 2020 concept truck projects forward by half a metre for increased aerodynamics and to increase crash protection for other road users such as motorcycle riders, by acting as a “crumple zone” in a collision.
Like the MAN Concept S, the Vision 2020 also features cameras in place of rear-view mirrors to rid the blind spots for its driver.
However the Vision projects the images on the inside of the windscreen, allowing the driver to spot any obstacles that may be behind them without having to take their eyes off the road ahead.
The concepts are the outcome of European Commission plans to make lorries safer and greener by improving design.
If the European Commission’s proposals for greater freedom in truck design are approved, these concept trucks could hit the roads by 2018.
(Information supplied by Sophie Baker-Britton, a British automotive writer for Walker Movements who, together with her family of motorbike enthusiasts, support the EU plans.)