Trilean – Tilting Gold Wing Enclosed Trike

Trilean - tilting Gold Wing trike

Trilean - tilting Gold Wing trikeThe idea of a tilting trike with a fixed rear drive section has been getting a bit more press with the Carver and Clever and the VentureOne, but I saw this one, called the Trilean, for sale on eBay based on a Honda Gold Wing and according to the description, it was built in 1998, so it precedes the others by a number of years. Before you criticize it on aesthetic grounds, remember, this looks like a homebuilt creation by someone who thought it would be a cool idea and then actually built it.

Power is from a 1520cc Honda Gold Wing flat six, the differential is from a BMW 320i, steel tube frame with a custom designed fiberglass body. The tilt is computer controlled, but he says it needs "further development work" with some type of programmable logic controller. Not surprising, since I think that would be the most difficult part of getting something like this to work right. Of course, now that those other trikes are doing it, there might be a better possibility of making it work.

Interesting idea and just needs a bit of tinkering (or maybe a lot) to make it work right but for a garage project, it's pretty neat.

Link: auction has ended


  1. chris says

    why does it need a computer program to make it work? i thought this setup was a natural leaning, self stabilizing design. i know BMW’s has got a hydraulic system, but i was under the impression that was for stabilization, not the actual tilt. and the Gyro todd references IS natural leaning. i’m confused. can anyone out there help me?

  2. GenWaylaid says

    Maybe the reason it needs computer-controlled lean is simply because it’s so heavy. I can’t even imagine using my weight to tilt what is easily a 1000+ lb machine while sitting inside of it.

    It seems to me like the control law that determines the tilt angle would be relatively simple. All you need to do is make some sort of plumb-bob sensor and feed back its angle through a PD controller. That way, the bike automatically leans to align its vertical axis with the combination of gravity and cornering forces. Maybe you could find an appropriate sensor and controller already built for you inside a Segway.

  3. Lean&Mean says

    This probably does need a computer to control the lean because there’s no way to counter steer it into leaning. It would have to steer like a car – totally unintuitive and alien to any biker.
    Also, most of the weight is on the trike back end so doesn’t move. Another serious problem is all the weight and only one front brake. No thanks it wont lean properly and it wont stop.
    If it had been built like the Piaggio MP3 with two front wheels that camber change to tilt, it would quite possibly work just like a normal bike. All bikes steer by moving the tyre contact patch under the centre of gravity. The bike’s own weight and cornering forces cause the lean.
    Once under way, the all-up weight will really make little difference. But at low speeds and during quick left/right flicks, the steering will be HEAVY indeed.