Official Car of 2014 MotoGPLast weekend, the 2014 season of the MotoGP World Championship got underway and long-term partner BMW M GmbH is once again on board.
BMW M’s 16th season as “Official Car of MotoGP” began with the Qatar Grand Prix in Doha. BMW has been involved in MotoGP since 1999 and provides the fleet of official cars.BMW M GmbH presented its first highlight of the year at the season-opener at the “Losail International Circuit”: the new BMW M4 Coupé made its debut as a safety car. The latest high-performance coupé from BMW M GmbH spearheads the safety car fleet in the 2014 MotoGP season.The new BMW M4 Coupé combines motorsport genes with unlimited road capability in a highly-emotional overall concept. The six-cylinder inline engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology, which was developed from scratch, and high-rev concept offer a maximum torque of 405 ft. lb. over a wide range of speeds, while generating a top output of 431 hp.The BMW M4 Coupé accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4.1 seconds. This car was designed for the ultimate driving dynamics and to be used on the racetracks of this world. Proof of this comes in the innovative cooling system and reduced weight of the car, which is made possible by the consistent use of lightweight materials.As with all safety cars, the BMW M4 Coupé was further optimized in the BMW M factory, in order to ensure it is ideally suited to leading a field of racing motorcycles. To achieve this, the technicians at the BMW M factory dismantled the rear seat and fitted RECARO racing seats, including Schroth belts.In addition, BMW M Performance Parts are used extensively this season, including the titanium BMW M Performance exhaust system with carbon finishers, which is used for the first time. Further components, such as a BMW M Performance front splitter, a BMW M Performance rear diffusor and a BMW M Performance rear spoiler made of carbon optimize the aerodynamic properties of the BMW M4 Coupé Safety Car. LED lights on the front skirt, LED lights on the roof and the exclusive livery ensure that this high-performance car is clearly a safety car.The new BMW M3 Sedan also makes its debut as a safety car in the 2014 season. In total, this year’s fleet of official MotoGP cars comprises five BMW M and M Performance models. The BMW M4 Coupé, BMW M3 and BMW M5 act as safety cars. The safety officer takes to the track in a BMW M6 Coupé, while two BMW M550d xDrive Tourings are used as medical cars.Furthermore, BMW Motorrad is also providing two new BMW HP4s as safety bikes. This year, a medical car will also be in action at overseas races, in order to guarantee even more safety for the MotoGP riders. You can find more information on the 2014 safety car fleet online at: www.bmw-m-safetycar.com“BMW M is proud to be part of the MotoGP success story for the 16th season running,” said Thomas Schemera, Director of Sales and Marketing BMW M GmbH. “We are delighted that the BMW M4 Coupé experienced its baptism of fire as a safety car out on the racetrack. Four generations of the BMW M3 have combined motorsport genes and unlimited suitability for daily use into one highly emotional overall concept. The BMW M4 Coupé is a natural progression of these fundamental ideas. We are certain that this model will set new standards with regard to the overall concept, precision and agility. This year sees the introduction of a medical car for overseas races, increasing the level of protection offered to the riders. This is another important stepping stone in our continuously expanding commitment to MotoGP.”Providing the BMW M fleet remains the focal point of the partnership with Dorna Sports, but there are many other important aspects to BMW M GmbH’s involvement at Grands Prix. These include the BMW M Award, which will be presented for the twelfth time in 2014. At the end of each MotoGP season, this award is presented to the rider with the best qualifying results. The winner receives an exclusive BMW M car for his efforts. Last year, Spanish MotoGP rookie Marc Márquez became the youngest winner in the history of the BMW M Award. At the season finale in Valencia (ESP), he was presented with a BMW M6 Coupé in an exclusive “Frozen Black Metallic” livery in recognition of his success.This season’s top qualifier can once again look forward to a genuine highlight – however, exactly which BMW M model is up for grabs will not be revealed until the start of the European MotoGP season in Jerez (ESP).
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This week, in the first segment Editor Don Williams talks to us about the new Kawasaki Versys 650 LT. It’s the middleweight ADV style machine that uses the same 650 parallel twin motor as the Ninja 650, so it’s an excellent performer in a user-friendly, good looking package.
In the second segment, I chat with one of my dearest industry friends—now retired Honda PR executive, Jon Seidel. Jon’s fascinating career spans some 30 years with Big Red, and gave him some great experiences with some incredible machines. I was fortunate enough to be invited on many of the press launches that he organized. His new project is documenting and saving many of the old archives from years gone by—and incidentally, if you have anything that may be of value to the project, please contact us by email at email@example.com and we’ll pass it all on to Jon.
So on that note, from all of us here at Ultimate Motorcycling, we hope you enjoy this episode!