On June 15, 2022, BMW Motorrad announced its newest communication system, the ConnectedRide Com U1. It’s not clear at this point whether this system is in addition to BMW’s older Fit For All comms unit, or is meant to replace it. Like the Fit For All, this newest member of the BMW communications family was developed by Sena, and appears to be closely related to the 50R. 

The ConnectedRide Com U1 utilizes both Bluetooth and Mesh 2.0 technology, and allows riders to do plenty of what you’d expect. Features include Bluetooth communication with two participants, Mesh communication with up to 24, listening to music, making phone calls, and of course listening to announcements from your favorite navigation system. ConnectedRide Com U1 is also equipped with an FM radio that can save up to ten of your favorite stations (yes, this is still 2022, we checked). 

Riders can interface with the ConnectedRide Com U1 via four buttons on the helmet-mounted unit, or else via the smartphone app. Voice controls are also available for the unit in your choice of eight languages: English, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Russian, or Spanish. If riders connect their smartphones to their ConnectedRide Com U1s, they can also speak directly to their phone’s digital voice assistant through the unit. (Hey Siri, which gas station has the best coffee nearby?) 

Gallery: BMW ConnectedRide Com U1

One feature that BMW touts with the ConnectedRide Com U1 unit is its intelligent audio mixing function. As an example, the system prioritizes navigation instructions over conversations you may be having over the intercom, which should hopefully minimize the potential to get lost because you didn’t hear where your next turn is. If you’re out and about, and the battery level gets too low, your CRCU will sound an audio announcement to alert you that you need to recharge. 

Speaking of charging, what’s the battery situation like? BMW claims a 13-hour potential battery life time if using the Bluetooth intercom, or up to eight hours if using the Mesh intercom. Your unit can quick-charge from empty in just one hour, which is perfect for a meal stop. For those who just want to take a quick coffee or sandwich break, just 20 minutes of charging will get you 3.5 hours of Mesh intercom time, or up to 6 hours of Bluetooth comms time via the unit’s lithium polymer battery. 

One thing to know about Sena’s proprietary Mesh communications technology is that it doesn’t work with non-Sena (or BMW) communications units. So, the CRCU can only help you talk to big groups of riders who are using comms units by one of those two brands. It’s something to keep in mind if you regularly ride in a group. Bluetooth comms are still possible between helmet comms made by different companies, but not with as many riders at a time as with Mesh. 

The BMW ConnectedRide Com U1 isn’t listed for sale in BMW’s online accessories catalog yet, and no price has yet been announced. The Sena 50R it’s based on retails for around $360, but it’s unclear how closely related the two units are, nor what official pricing will be like for the BMW-branded communications cousin.

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