News 21 May 2010

WEC: BMW Husqvarna Motorsport to debut prototype in Italy

Tarkkala will be on a BMW Husqvarna prototype in Italy this weekend.

Tarkkala will be on a BMW Husqvarna prototype in Italy this weekend.

BMW Husqvarna Motorsport is preparing to send a prototype bike into action for the first time in the upcoming round of the FIM World Enduro Championship (WEC) in Lovere, Italy, this weekend.

The bike, which will compete in the E2 class at the event, is built around the Husqvarna chassis concept and powered by the innovative and highly capable 450 cc four-stroke engine developed by BMW Motorrad.

“Back in February we signed up to race in the E2 class of the Enduro World Championship under the new name BMW Husqvarna Motorsport,” explained Rainer Thoma, president and CEO of Husqvarna Motorcycles. “This collaboration of BMW Motorrad and Husqvarna Motorcycles aims to pool the two brands’ expertise in off-road competition for 450cc four-stroke machines.

“The forthcoming debut appearance of the prototype bike is the logical next step following a very promising phase of testing. Although our leading rider Juha Salminen will have to sit out this coming weekend through injury, we’re approaching the event in optimistic mood with our prototype bike, our other regular rider Marko Tarkkala and stand-in man Andreas Lettenbichler.”

Over the past few months, the people at the Husqvarna Motorcycles development department have been working closely with specialists at BMW Motorrad and Speedbrain to develop a bike combining the Husqvarna chassis concept with the innovative and accomplished 450cc four-stroke engine developed by BMW Motorrad.

The testing phase, which got underway at the start of the year, is now completed, and the bike will be entered in competition from this weekend.

“Our aim for the 2010 season was to be fighting for the title in the E2 class of the Enduro World Championship with the BMW Husqvarna Motorsport team,” adds BMW Motorrad motorsport director Berthold Hauser. “With Juha’s injury and his absence from the next race as a result, that’s going to be tough.

“In order to be successful despite this setback, it’s imperative that we make best possible use of the available synergies. With the testing phase completed the aim now is to use this genuine Husqvarna with BMW G 450 X drive concept to be up there fighting for success and victories in the sporting arena.”

BMW Motorrad Motorsport will remain actively involved in off-road competition with the BMW G 450 X. The team is planning to continue racing the bike in the European and the German Cross Country Championship and a range of Extreme Enduro events.

Meanwhile, the Husqvarna CH Racing team will continue to compete in the E1 and E3 classes of the FIM Enduro World Championship. The Supermoto and Motocross segments will also remain under the Husqvarna banner.