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Anti-lock Braking System for Two-wheelers

By Juhi Walia
01 August 2022, 1:22 PM

When it comes to two-wheelers, especially the new options that come with high-speed features, the responsibility and safety need to be even more crucial. As per numbers shared by the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways Report from 2019, 37% of those killed in road accidents were two-wheeler riders, 

Braking is considered the most crucial part of any vehicle while driving. Especially for two-wheelers that have powerful engines and can reach high speed. It is necessary to make the braking system powerful. Anti-Lock Braking System or ABS is a must-have for any modern two-wheeler and for the additional safety it brings.

What is Anti-lock Braking System?

Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) is a locking system that prevents the wheels of your vehicle from locking. This feature ensures that even if you press the brake hard, it doesn't lead to your two-wheeler skidding or losing control. This is a standard feature in almost all vehicles nowadays, be it two or four-wheelers.

ABS usually is a safety system that helps stop the wheels of your vehicle from locking up, thereby helping you control your twp-wheeler. An ABS usually enables you to control the vehicle in steep and wet terrain and comes in handy, especially during the monsoon season, when the roads are wet and slippery. 

How does an Anti-lock Braking System Work?

To maintain the stability of the two-wheeler at all times, modern vehicles come with Electronic Stability Control (ESC) Management System, including the ABS. The Engine Control Unit (ECU) is connected with the ESC and includes multiple sensors on each wheel to gauge and monitor activity in real-time. If the ESC detects sudden or high-pressure braking, the ABS is used, which prevents the wheels from locking and loosens the brakes immediately.

This happens in a series of computerised and pre-programmed processes, which is ideal for helping the two-wheeler stop as soon as the brakes are applied while ensuring that the wheels do not slip or lose control. So as a driver, driving a two-wheeler with ABS is safer and ensures that you are always in control of the vehicle. 

Benefits of Anti-lock Braking System

ABS comes in handy not just in specific instances but is a must-have for any two-wheeler owner for ultimate safety. The multiple benefits of ABS include:

It Stops Your Vehicle from Slipping, Even on a Slippery Surface

The chances of two-wheelers skidding during monsoon season when the road is wet are incredibly high. It has often led to accidents as two-wheelers skid when brakes get applied instantly. ABS helps riders control the bike even on slippery surfaces.

Drivers Do Not Have to Worry About Sudden Braking

Indian roads and traffic are chaotic, and often drivers are required to brake instantly, which can lead to the tires skidding or the two-wheeler losing control and slipping. ABS helps control the braking motion even when the brakes get applied suddenly and ensures no damage. 

ABS Comes with Traction Control

ABS is not a standalone technology but comes with other advanced mechanisms, including traction control in the bike.

The Vehicle Comes to a Complete Stop Instantly

ABS also ensures that when the brakes are applied, the system reduces the stopping distance and makes the vehicle control effective compared to a non-ABS bike. 


Overall, ABS is beneficial and plays a crucial role in emergencies, where the brakes often get applied instantly and can lead to the vehicle losing control.  You can save your vehicle from slipping and losing your control over it with the ABS. It is also efficient to ensure no damage to the driver and the pillion rider when applying the brakes suddenly.

While ABS came in four-wheelers many years ago, the first use of ABS technology in an Indian-made two-wheeler came in TVS Apache RTR 180 motorbike in March 2011. In April 2019, government regulations mandated that all two and four-wheelers with an engine of 125CC or above must have ABS. 

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1. What is an anti-lock braking system?

Anti-lock braking system is a locking system that prevents the wheels of your vehicle from locking. This feature ensures that even if you press the brake hard, it doesn't lead to your two-wheeler skidding or losing control.

2. Is it good to have anti-lock brakes?

ABS has several advantages. It helps lower the likelihood of fatal accidents as the bike does not lose control and comes to a stop once the brake is applied. ABS also ensures that the vehicle does not skid on wet or dry roads and is ideal for two-wheelers.

3. What are the three types of ABS?

There are three types of ABS found in vehicles:

  1. One-channel or single sensor ABS
  2. Three-channel ABS
  3. Four-Channel ABS

4. Do all two-wheelers have anti-lock brakes?

ABS is now a legal requirement and a new standard for all two-wheelers with engines above 125cc, as mandated in April 2019. 

5. How do I activate ABS for my two-wheeler?

If your vehicle has ABS technology built-in, no manual process is required to activate ABS. The electronic system is configured to understand when you hit the brake pedal hard and with a sudden motion. However, when you hit the brake pedal due to an emergency stop, do not jerk or turn your wheel too fast, as the purpose of ABS is to help the bike come to a sudden halt and maintain its stability.

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