Munich – March 12, 2013… The 2013 season of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) is not the only thing kicking off at the 12 Hours of Sebring (US) this weekend. The race also marks the start of a new era in BMW Motorsport's program in North America: This is the first time BMW Team RLL will line up against opposition in the GT class with the newly developed BMW Z4 GTE.

The BMW Z4 GTE debuts in the wake of an extremely successful Sebring scorecard for its predecessor, the BMW M3 GT. BMW Team RLL won the GT class at the endurance classic in Florida in both 2011 and 2012. This year, the 61st staging of the race at the "Sebring International Raceway" will serve as a marker to determine the strength of the new car. At the wheel of a sinister No. 55 BMW Z4 GTE finished in BMW's Frozen Black will be Bill Auberlen (US), Maxime Martin (BE) and Jörg Müller (DE). The No. 56 car — in classic, Alpine White BMW Motorsport livery — will be driven by Dirk Müller (DE), Joey Hand (US) and John Edwards (US).

Jens Marquardt (BMW Motorsport Director):
"After all the months of development and preparation with the new BMW Z4 GTE, we are obviously now looking forward to testing ourselves against the opposition for the first time in Sebring. We have been very successful at this 12-hour race in recent years. I am excited to see whether the BMW Z4 GTE will cope as well with the specific demands of this race as its predecessor the BMW M3 GT did. We would like to start the season with a good result. However, the priority is to capitalize on the potential of the new car. This will obviously take a while."

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