Lane Splitting: there’s an app for that

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Live in any of the 49 states which don’t allow lane splitting and looking to bone up on your cage fighting skills for when you move? Lane Splitter (free), available for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch is a surprisingly realistic simulator complete with wheelies, deliberately obtuse car drivers and nails in your tires when you ride on the margins.

Game play is surprisingly realistic, nailing the delicate balance between response and control as you rotate the iPhone to steer or speed up. That’s something many other motorcycle apps don’t manage, skewing towards ridiculously sensitive and uncontrollable.

Cars almost always try to change lanes into you, and passing them gives you a feeling of uneasiness that’s uncannily similar to splitting traffic down the 405. The real fun starts when you tap on the screen and your helmetless, suit wearing rider does his best impression of the Black Devil. Long wheelies equal huge bonus points.

Note the number of times you end up dead and remember that in real life your bike comes with brakes too. That’s probably the best takeaway for when you’re ready to try lane splitting for real.

App Store

  • Jason

    Thanks for the tip! Downloading now.

  • http://www.lgdm.fr stempere

    Damn wheelies are hard to hold!
    Just did a quick game: 3600.

  • http://www.pedalgents.com holdingfast

    6740

  • stephan

    4508. target fixation practice

  • http://www.facebook.com/beastincarnate BeastIncarnate

    So, my eyes are bleeding after one game. 10656. It’s definitely a good way to kill a few minutes.

  • smoke4ndmears

    14399.

    I didn’t know you could do wheelies!

  • http://greatjoballweek.blogspot.com/ Case

    “gives you a feeling of uneasiness that’s uncannily similar to splitting traffic down the 405″ – I don’t need more of this. I get enough as it is. :)

  • MotoRandom

    For those of you you without expensive iProds (like me) but that do have a PC with a decent video card, I highly recommend GTA IV Liberty City Stories: The Lost and the Damned. Not only to you get play out a cheesy biker gang story, you get to ride around a mini version of NYC. The ragdoll physics make for good fun as cab drivers turn left in your path and the lane splitting can get quite humorous. Lots of authentic swearing from pedestrians. It’s a great way to kill time while your waiting for snow to melt.

    • Kevin

      +1, big fun. love that game. Sometimes I’ll just cruise around aimlessly listening to the hilarious radio programs.

    • NickP

      I liked it overall, although I always found myself ditching the terrible chopper you’re given and stealing myself a decent sportbike so I could go around corners :)

      I did however have a huge problem with the characters. They pretty much nailed the biker gang child-in-adult-body stereotype. Rockstar games always have you playing as the anti-hero, but never in my life have I wanted to see the main character die so much as I did in LatD.

    • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

      sounds like fun. but ain’t nothing like the real thing… I loved dicing through traffic in NYC!

  • Kevin

    Being on said 405 every day, I can tell you that pretty much every lane splitter I see is doing it at unsafe speeds. And I mean, splitting lanes doing 60-70 when traffic is loosely packed and doing 50-55.

    • Sean Smith

      I’d much rather split lanes than try to maintain a territory the size of a car with something barely larger than a bicycle. When you’re moving 15mph faster than the speed of traffic, you don’t need to worry about getting hit from behind or the side. It’s also somewhat easy to spot a driver thats about to change lanes and slow down for a second to let him make his move.

      I’ve done roughly 40,000 stress-free miles in the last 2 years on that freeway lane splitting in exactly the way you describe and have yet to have an issue. What about that is unsafe?

    • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

      5-10 mph over the flow of traffic is what’s considered acceptable by CHP. I’d much rather complete my passes quickly than hang out in people’s blind spots any longer than necessary. At least the 405 is nice n’ wide, unlike 101 through Hollywood.

  • Marlon

    You don’t have to worry about getting hit from the side? I always had problems with exactly that. People don’t expect you to be next to them and will change lanes into you without even looking.

  • Bronson

    29 second long wheelie. Almost as good as real life, lol!

  • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

    wait, my bike comes with brakes? wow, I gotta go for a ride and see how they work!

    In 25 years of riding, mostly in LA, SF & NYC, but also NC, NJ, and a little overseas, and ALWAYS lanesplitting regardless of the law, I’ve only had 1 where lanesplitting got me into trouble. Because I was hidden by an SUV and forgot I was approaching a (minor) intersection, so I didn’t slow down and someone turned left in front of me.

    2 other crashes I had (car in front stops suddenly while I’m tailgating) would’ve been avoided had I been closer to the white line than the center of the lane. In fact, I once avoided this type of crash by lanesplitting.

    Pay 110% attention to cars ahead, especially if they have room to change lanes. They may not see us, but they’re not going to try to change lanes into a car next to them. Unless they’re from Massachusetts, in which case they will try to swerve into you to hit you. In NC they’ll just honk, which is amusing, and in LA it’s always the Piouses, the narrowest cars out there, that somehow manage to block me the most. It’s like they’re jealous or something. But when people move aside before I reach them, they get a thumbs up for being so rad. It’s important to tell cagers we appreciate them when they’re doing the right thing.