A Famous Tire Company Has Invented a Hack to Make Motorcycle Riding Easier

One of the biggest names in tires, quality food and mascots has a clever idea for your bike.

michelin
Michelin

Michelin is known primarily for three things: its tires, its restaurant guides and its iconic Michelin Man mascot, an anthropomorphic tire stack known initially as “Bibendum” in France. But as Motorcycle.com has discovered, the company has a new patent that could revolutionize the world of motorcycling — and make them far more comfortable to live with.

Many motorcycles don’t have a reverse gear. It’s not a huge problem for smaller, lightweight bikes, but for heavier ones, walking the bike around for low-speed maneuvers (like backing up to a gas pump or parking space, or loading a motorcycle onto a trailer) can be a pain.

Michelin’s solution, simply enough, calls for a roller powered by a tiny electric motor. The roller would press against the wheel with the flick of a handlebar-mounted switch, delivering up to three lb-ft of torque, moving the bike at about 0.6 mph. It’s not a lot of oomph, but enough to make it much easier to walk the bike around.

The roller would use a rechargeable 3.6-volt lithium-ion battery pack, fit under the fender or mudguard on the rear wheel and mount to the swingarm. The entire unit would easily attach and be self-contained and designed to fit several different bikes, making it a compelling third-party accessory.

Of course, a patent does not mean the idea will go into production — automotive engineers come up with a whole bunch of wacky ideas that are interesting but never make it into vehicles. This one, though, feels simple, practical and very easily attainable.

LEARN MORE

This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below