The pillow will open from the area under the handlebars (photo: screenshot)
In 2001, Piaggio was the first to announce a warning system for scooters against dangerous proximity to a vehicle, based on a chip, in collaboration with Boston Robotics and the Israeli Vayar Imaging company.
Now the Italian scooter manufacturer is taking another step to increase rider safety with a patent for an airbag - for the first time in scooters.
To date, only Honda has offered an airbag and only in its huge touring motorcycle - the Goldwing.
In terms of its principle of operation, the pillow, which is developed jointly with the Swedish Autoliv, does not differ in its operation from the one that has existed in cars for decades.
A nylon bag in a case with a mechanism based on chemical action in the center of which the rapid release of gases causes the pillow to inflate.
As in a car, the activating factor is a sensor that detects an impact with a force that requires the opening of a cushion and, as in a car, the purpose of the cushion is to prevent the secondary impact, the one in which the rider may be injured by the scooter itself after the accident itself.
A second purpose, which is unique to two-wheeled vehicles, is the ability to absorb some of the energy during the accident, thus reducing the intensity of the rider's injuries.
With an unusual structure and large dimensions compared to an airbag (photo: screenshot)
The patent filings show a very large airbag in airbag terms.
It is located in front of the rider's knees, with its opening point being under the handlebars of the scooter.
When it opens, it spreads out between the rider's legs as well as up towards the stomach, chest and head.
A first prototype of a scooter equipped with the airbag was presented at the EICMA show in 2022, when it was displayed on top of the MP350, Peugeot's three-wheeled scooter.
However, the company itself has not published any information regarding the date of the introduction of the pillow in a mass-produced vessel or the model on which it will be installed.
The choice of MP3 as a platform for the airbag is understandable.
Due to its structure with a relatively long wheelbase, two wheels in front and a low center of gravity, it is less prone to tipping forward in the event of an accident, so there is a chance that the rucha will be in the "correct" position for the airbag to benefit it.
Since it was introduced in 2006, it has been one of the pillars of the Italian manufacturer, mainly as one that allows new, veteran or returning riders to feel confident due to the improved stability of its two front wheels, especially when leaning and braking.
However, it is not yet clear when the new development will reach the market, and how much it will cost the three-wheeled scooter.
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