Posted by: Tony Carson | 2 August, 2007

Can-Am Spyder Roadster — the tripod with panache

Spyder 3Pixbig

The common refrain is ‘What is it?’

It’s a Canadian-designed motorcycle that may just usher in a new generation of technologically advanced open-air motoring across North America and Europe, or may just fizzle out as a brave but overly kooky Canadian business flop.

With two wheels in front, one in back, the Can-Am Spyder Roadster is a creation of Bombardier Recreational Products, or BRP. The firm used to be a division of Quebec-based industrial powerhouse Bombardier, but was spun off in 2004 so Bombardier could focus on its aviation and train businesses, getting away from the recreational power-sports industry that Joseph Armand Bombardier helped create when he invented the Ski-Doo in 1959.

The full story is at the Globe and Mail entitled Three wheels that will make them stare
But a question: weren’t three-wheelers banned and replaced by quads? This thing tries to deal with that with electronics, but will current save you from your own stupidity, the major cause of accidents?

What sets it apart from both ATVs and motorcycles are the Spyder Roadster’s electronic brains, designed to keep its rider in control, that are more similar to rear-wheel-drive luxury sedans than anything now on two or three wheels.

This sophisticated system comes from Bosch, one of the largest suppliers of such “electronic guardian angels” in the automotive industry, and works just like it does on four wheels. It adds antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability control systems. This system incorporates ABS sensors at each wheel to read for any discrepancy in wheel speed, then cuts power to the driven rear wheel whenever wheelspin is detected.

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