Honda have announced that they will be fitting Datatool vehicle trackers to all new road bikes free of charge.
Customers buying new Hondas after Monday, July 2 can have a Datatool TrakKING Adventure system fitted at no extra cost, which offers automatic theft monitoring and instant notification as well as a detailed journey history which can be accessed via a smartphone app.
All the buyer will have to pay is the £10 a month subscription to the service. Existing Honda owners can also have a tracker fitted at a subsidised rate.
Normally costing between £280 and £350 fitted, Honda are also offering owners who bought bikes between January 1 and July 1 this year the chance to have the TrakKING for just £70. Owners of any older Honda can have one fitted for £199.
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High recovery rate
Trackers are known as the best way to recover stolen bikes, highlighting exactly where the stolen bike has been, what speed it has been travelling while stolen and pinpointing its current position.
“Our records show that 85-90% of bikes fitted with one of our trackers are recovered, usually within a few hours,” says Dave Plummer from Datatool. “And in reality, that rate is even higher as our records of stolen machines includes pizza delivery bikes and the like which are torched or ditched.”
The TrakKING Adventure is one of the most advanced tracking devices on the market. Using a GPS transponder and mobile hardware to communicate its position, it is accurate enough to be approved by the police as a recovery method. Triggered as soon as the ignition key is turned off, the system is designed to alert you by text about any unauthorised movement.
If the movement continues and the bike is moved away from where it parked, TrakKING will enter full alert mode and notification will be sent to the dedicated Datatool tracking team who will contact the owner straight away and communicate with the police to recover the bike and hopefully nail the thieving scum while they’re at it.
The system also comes with a mapping app allowing you to map your own journeys and a crash detector function.
Honda’s UK scheme has gained official approval from Honda Japan and Honda Europe and if successful it could be rolled out by other Honda importers around the world.
“It’ll be really interesting to see how people receive it. We just wanted to do something positive in the light of all the negative coverage about the bike industry and bike theft recently,” said Honda UK’s boss Neil Fletcher.
“The TrakKING is an excellent product and we wanted to help people with the perception and worry of bike theft, and to reassure them about the outcome if the worst happens. This isn’t really about generating sales, it’s more about just looking after riders and as it's a Thatcham approved system, it has the advantage of helping them with their insurance as well.”
Honda aren’t the only manufacturer getting in on the tracker act though, BMW and Yamaha offer a system at a cost and KTM are also developing a system.
Ducati have offered trackers in the past, “We’ve had a collaboration with Bike Trac where we gave a tracker free with the 959 Panigale,” explains Ducati’s Alan Jones. “We already offer integrated alarms and we’re constantly looking at how we can improve security.”
Suzuki, who at the moment don’t have a manufacturer-approved security system could also be one of the next to add one as they try to incentivise potential buyers. “It’s on our radar and has been for a while,” said a Suzuki spokesman.
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