• Country

The Company Trek Wants Bikes to Be Able to Talk to Cars

By Christopher Ashley

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers wants to revolutionise the way we use our roads. They’ve released Cellular V2X to the world, and Trek want to use it to make your bike talk to cars. Let’s take a look at the future.

Vehicle to Whatever

If V is your car, then X could be literally anything. X could be another car, a shop, or even a tree – but Trek are looking at making your next bike an X. Imagine your bike alerting a car to your presence before the driver is even on the same road as you. How could that affect the driving experience?

Dynamic route planning

What if your club ride was picked up by a driver’s SatNav before he’s even started the journey? If every bike had V2X, the SatNav could, in theory, plan an alternative route and avoid an encounter. Both parties win.

Drivers may feel less aggrieved following a peloton, and for cyclists, hugging the gutter out of guilt to help passing motorists could be a thing of the past.

How smart will your city be?

Trek are wise to the imminent Internet of Things revolution – and they want to be in the saddle when it happens. At CES 2018, talk of Smart Cities created a buzz. As mobile phones become ubiquitous, and the sales of tech wearables are stalling, the Internet of Things is clearly the next seam to be mined by tech companies.

Tech companies want to partner with traditional manufacturers to grow their businesses, and bike manufacturers like Trek want to add features that make tangible differences to their customerslives. The Internet of Things will bring improved safety, navigation, but what could it mean for performance?


V2X means your bike will speak to your phone, as well as any car nearby. There’s greater potential for mesh networking to provide greater coverage, and with less “outage” as your app records your data, your performance will be captured more accurately than ever.

Some tech visionaries are looking beyond performance analysis and looking at how performance measurements could be used to enhance entertainment. Imagine hopping on your cycle trainer and being able to compete against the Tour de France peloton, in real time, while watching the coverage.

Although it’s unlikely Katusha-Alpecin will allow a live feed from their cyclists’ Garmin Edge, V2X could provide a way for neutral cars to collect average measurements such as Watts and gradients, before feeding them to broadcasters. With so many exciting benefits, it’s easy to see why Trek want to make bikes talk to cars.