By Drew Johnson
Thursday, May 15th, 2008 @ 7:26 am
 
Volkswagen will be teaming with Austria's KTM to make the company's first ever motorcycle, a new report finds. You may know KTM best for its raceday-ready X-Bow, which was actually its first attempt at a four-wheeled car. KTM has been producing motorcycles since 1953.

While a VW-badged motorcycle might seem a little out there, it does have plenty of foundation in reality. Volkswagen engineers helped KTM develop the X-Bow, and the little racer is even powered by a 2.0L Audi powerplant. Since KTM has plenty of motorcycle knowhow and owes the German automaker one, the partnership makes sense for the project.

It's also not unheard of for an automaker to also produce bikes, as companies like BMW, Honda and Suzuki make both vehicles of the two and four-wheeled variety.

Add in that VW has already shown interest in motorcycle-derived vehicles -- like the 2006 three-wheeled GX-3 concept (pictured) -- and the picture becomes clearer.

It remains unclear when the new bike will hit the road, but it should sport styling that is unmistakably VW.

The foray into the motorcycle world would also seem to put the GX-3 back in the picture, says AutoExpress. If VW ultimately decides to give the vehicle the green light, it could start a whole new segment of fuel-sipping performance vehicles -- giving enthusiasts hope in a CAFE dominated future. The feather-light concept was powered by a 185 horsepower 1.6L unit, and promised the maneuverability of a motorcycle.