The court in Oldenburg, in northwest Germany, heard how the man drove into an oncoming cycle lane and hit the unsuspecting 48-year-old cyclist on purpose.
He had become homeless after losing his job as a computer scientist and spending all his savings on a trip around Europe.
Sharing the full story, not just the headlines
The court heard the 62-year-old wanted to be handed a prison sentence so he would have “all-round care in a penal institution”.
His victim was seriously injured in the attack and is still suffering from physical and psychological effects of the accident, the BBC reported.
The court ruled his motivation of seeking permanent care and shelter in jail was malicious and fuelled by greed, and qualified as attempted murder.
A court spokesman said the man appeared to be remorseful for his actions and decided to give the victim his pension payments.