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Underslung Mirrors on the Way

Honda has patented mirrors mounted underneath the bars, rather than on top. The mirrors, which according to the patent application use a conventional stalk, would mount at the top of the forks just below the top triple clamp. It doesn’t sound like a ground-breaking innovation, but Honda claims several advantages for the underslung mirrors, which are serious enough to warrant the patent.

First off is better visibility than conventionally-mounted mirrors – because the mirrors are below the rider’s elbows, the view is less obstructed. This in turn allows them to be mounted closer to the centre of the bike – conventional mirrors have to be high and wide so you can see past your shoulders. A narrower mounting, says Honda, means better aerodynamics, not to mention improved steering feel and handling, as the weight of the inboard mirrors has less effect on the steering. It’s thought that the first production Honda to receive the mirrors will be the new CB1000R.

The illustration shows the different fields of view of conventional mirrors (50) and the underslung versions (6).

Jim Freeman, Chair of the BMF, said, “After decades of an excellent view of my elbows, I’m not sure how I’ll cope with an unobstructed view! It does smack of the classic Honda ‘we fixed a problem that you never thought you had’ but thanks for trying. I’ll still be doing my ‘lifesavers’ whatever happens.”

Written by Peter Henshaw

Top image courtesy of Ankyn – Pixabay

In article drawing courtesy of Honda