Interview with Marco Melandri – BMW top driver and


Interview with Marco Melandri – BMW top driver and
Interview with Marco Melandri – BMW top driver and fourth in
the Superbike world championship total ranking
Altran researches and develops new technologies in the automotive sector including
motorcycle racing. For this reason, Altran sponsors the ambitious BMW Motorrad
GoldBet SBK Team of two top riders Marco Melandri and Chaz Davies.
In the course of the racing event at the Nürburgring we talked with Marco Melandri,
BMW Motorrad factory rider, about the meaning of electronics in racing sports.
Altran is supporting you as a race rider, mainly with innovative technology in the field
of the engine control unit aim ed at achieving good racing results. How does this
In racing sports it is crucial to analyse all riding technologies after each race, and to improve them
for the next race. If you begin to look into and improve your technical performance after the season,
you will never make it across the finishing line first. The Altran engineer is integrated in the R&D
team of BMW Munich and support the BMW engineers to deliver for each race an updated package of
electronics and software.
Electronics in motorsports perform ever more complex tasks. Where do electronics
support you most?
In principle in all aspects of riding equally. Many people still think that electronics in motorsports
only refers to traction control, but this is a thing of the past. Traction control ensures that the wheels
don’t skid when speeding up. The truth is that motorsport management as we know it today is only
possible with electronics. Electronics are particularly important in the field of power supply, motor
brake and gearshift. Sometimes even chassis problems can be solved electronically. I can hardly
imagine riding without these aids – at least not at the current level.
Some say that electronics are making things too easy for drivers. What is your view?
I don’t think so. In the first place, electronics help riders become familiar with the properties of a
new motorcycle. Because bikes are often optimised electronics makes it easier to adapt to them – on
the other hand you have to know all about electronics – and that‘s rather time-consuming and
Does progress in electronics also show in the field of safety?
Absolutely – apart from higher speeds, one of the main reasons for introducing electronics was
safety! I remember many situations when I thought: Now I will crash! – But the electronics
immediately acted on the driving process so that the bike was just kept from crashing or falling on
the open track.
Which future technical innovations could you as a driver imagine?
I think that electronics has almost reached its limit – on the other hand the past has shown that
sometimes there are sudden development leaps. 10 years ago, I couldn’t imagine many of the
electronic installations that are meanwhile possible in motorcycles. With this in mind I’m very excited
to find out what the next ten years will bring.
About Altran
Altran was founded in 1982 in Paris and is the world leader in leading consultant for innovation and
engineering services today. Altran supports its customers in concepts design and development of
new products and services and has been advising market leaders from all fields of automobile,
energy, finances, healthcare, aerospace, rail and transport as well as telecommunication for over 30
years. Altran’s consultancy portfolio covers all phases of project development, from strategic
planning up to series production and for this purpose has access to comprehensive technological
know-how from four Solutions. At present Altran has more than 20,000 employees in over 20
countries with a Group revenue of 1,45 billion Euro in 2012. Altran’s share is listed at the Euronext
stock exchange in Paris. In Germany the consultancy has about 3,000 employees. The German
headquarter is in Frankfurt-upon-Main.
Press Contact
Dr. Markus Ross
Tel.: 0261 91599 733
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