BMW Motorrad's new president stunned the world when he officially announced a new ultra-sport literbike built to take on the established Japanese competitors both on the sales floor and the World Superbike Championship.
The new bike is dubbed the S1000RR, and it marks a bold new direction for the formerly staid German brand.
"We are confident that we will be able to start the Superbike World Championship next year with a convincing all-round package, and that our series motorcycle will be just as convincing," said Hendrik von Kuenheim, a 20-year veteran of BMW and now the General Director of BMW's motorcycle division. "In both terms of both its technology and price, our Supersports will be absolutely competitive."
BMW has a long history of racing, though it's been mostly in the realm of automobiles. They have the high-technology know-how, but it will be interesting to see how BMW can create a bike to be competitive on price and performance with the Japanese.
More: 2009 BMW S1000RR Preview