We may have seen handlebar-mounted bicycle turn indicators before, but we've never seen ones quite light these. Inspired by the indicators on the Audi A8, Zarathustra lights each feature a ring of 20 LEDs that blink in sequence, plus they've got a unique brake light system.
The German-designed Zarathustra setup consists of two aluminum-bodied leather-wrapped handlebar grips, which replace those currently on the bars. Using thumb-activated buttons on each one, users cause the grips' LED rings to flash sequentially, indicating an upcoming turn. Those rings can also be made to illuminate steadily for use as running lights, or to serve as hazard lights by both flashing at the same time.
Additionally, sensors mounted under each brake lever detect when that lever is being pulled. This causes both lights to illuminate in red, serving as a brake light – the two grips wirelessly communicate with one another, so pulling either lever causes both LED rings to light up. Almost every other bicycle brake light system we've seen utilizes an accelerometer instead … it's hard to say which approach would work best.
The waterproof grips can reportedly be easily removed. This allows users to keep them from getting stolen when the bike is left unattended, and to charge their batteries. The charge level of those batteries is monitored via an iOS/Android app, which also lets users access additional operational modes, and adjust the brightness and color of the lights.
If you're interested, the Zarathustra system is currently the subject of an Indiegogo campaign. A pledge of US$99 will get you a set, when and if they reach production. The planned retail price is $199.
They can be seen in use, in the following video.
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