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http://www.dailyexpress.com.my/news.cfm?NewsID=26659


Proton to make m-bikes?
10 May, 2004
BANBURY (United Kingdom): Proton Team KR, the world motorcycling racing outfit sponsored by Proton, is capable of producing street bikes for Proton, said team owner Kenny Roberts.

The 52 year-old Roberts, a former 500cc world motorcycling champion, said the team, which has been sponsored by Proton over the last few years, has built up the necessary expertise and technology to produce such motorcycles commercially.

He said Proton should capitalise on its brand, image and the technology which had been developed by Proton Team KR over the last few years to produce motorcycles that would be much sought-after.

Roberts, also known as “King Kenny” during his heyday as a champion racer for Yamaha, said by entering the motorcycle market, Proton would be able to move into the top ranks fairly quickly as there are only three major motorcycle manufacturers in the world - Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki.

He said there was a strong business case for Proton to move into the motorcycle segment as it could be a niche player in areas where it would have its strengths.

Proton, he said, had demonstrated that it could build good quality cars and it could do the same with motorcycles.

Roberts said Proton should harness the goodwill from its brand name which had been enhanced through its acquisition of Group Lotus.

He said a random survey by Proton Team KR showed that people usually associate Proton and Malaysia as quality brands and not “something from the Third World”.

Roberts said serious thought should be given to this proposal as there was something that Proton Team KR could work with Proton and Group Lotus to produce world-beating street motorbikes.

He said the team, which had produced the best motorcycle frame in this year’s World Motorcycling Championship, had received a number of enquiries from other countries to produce street bikes.

However, Roberts pointed out that he preferred to work with Proton because of his long association with the company which stretched back to the time of its former boss, the late Tan Sri Yahaya Ahmad. - Bernama
 

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That Proton GP bike is a sweet ride, if they could make something approaching the looks and performance in a more conventional 4 cyl 1000 cc street bike, I'd be all over it.
Chris
 

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One of my fav bicycle companies, Cannondale, didn't fare so well making the transition in making dirt bikes. It basically bankrupted the profitiable side of making bicycles. I hope Proton doesn't make the same mistake.
 

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Hmmm. Proton just bought a portion of MV Agusta a few months ago. I wonder how this will come into play. :confused:
 
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