Called ‘Bike Sense’, the system uses a combination of LED lights, sounds and vibrations around the cabin depending on the driving situation.
If a cyclist approaches on the near side while the vehicle is stationary at an intersection, for example, a typical bicycle ‘bell’ will ring and lights around the near side door frame will illuminate.
Door handles are also fitted with lights and vibration devices, which activate if the vehicle suspects an occupant is about to open their door into the path of a rider.
For cars stopped at pedestrian crossings, the aural and visual warnings are combined with a vibrating brake pedal to warn the driver a cyclist is about to cross their path.
Likewise, the throttle pedal will vibrate and become ‘stiff’ if the car suspects a driver is about to accelerate into the path of a rider.
JLR used bicycle bells and motorbike horns as its chosen warning sounds in the belief that they are more quickly recognised by the driver, rather than a generic warning noise.
The audible warnings are programed to sound only from the speakers on the same side of the vehicle as the rider, complimenting the light display.
A further feature is described by the carmaker as “tapping the driver on the shoulder”, where the top of the driver’s seat ‘extends’ on one side as a physical warning that urges the driver to perform a ‘head check’.
"Bike Sense takes us beyond the current technologies of hazard indicators and icons in wing mirrors, to optimising the location of light, sound and touch to enhance this intuition,” JLR’s Dr Wolfgang Epple said.
“This creates warnings that allow a faster cognitive reaction as they engage the brain's instinctive responses. If you see the dashboard glowing red in your peripheral vision, you will be drawn to it and understand straight away that another road user is approaching that part of your vehicle."
The technology is only at a concept stage for now, but the system can already distinguish cyclists from motorcyclists.
The system can also prioritise the greatest danger if the driver comes across a group of riders, and is able to detect riders even when they are obscured from view by other vehicles; including parked cars.
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MORE News & Reviews: JLR | Motorbike | Road Safety