Yamaha has applied for a patent on a carbon fibre frame that changes colours like a bruise when it has been damaged to alert the rider of a potential fault.
You would think a rider would know when their bike has been damaged in a crash! After all, with metal frames you can see bends and breaks in the welds.
But with a carbon frame, you can’t see the underlying hairline fractures that could lead the whole thing failing and splintering.
While the patent drawing shows an FR1300, this is probably aimed more at racers for the moment.
However, it will be of use to all riders as more and more bikes start to use carbon frames for light weight and subsequent savings in fuel and emissions output.
It would provide some peace of mind even if the bike just fell off its stand or you dropped it doing a slow u-turn.
MoreBikes.co.uk says the Yamaha patent shows an electric cable woven inside the frame that has a low resistance to impact.
It detects a fault and sends it to a “damage detection control unit” which alerts the rider, presumably by a light on the instrument panel much like an engine failure light.
It can also be upgraded to a fibre-optic version that detects chassis differences between the mainframe and subframe.
The patent says a fibre-reinforced resin material is used in the frame that changes colour when it is damaged much like a bruise.
This technology will no doubt add to the cost of the bike.
However, most customers interested in this tech would be cashed up, anyway, if they can afford a bike with a carbon frame.