David Beckham claims Steve McQueen inspired him to become the new face of Belstaff.

The retired footballer is ''excited'' to represent the British brand after rediscovering his love of motorcycling and hails the 1960s American actor as a style icon due to his long-term affiliation with the brand.

Speaking at the launch of Belstaff's London flagship store on New Bond Street, David explained: ''The reasons I am excited about becoming part of this brand are A) Because it is such an historical, British brand and B) Because Steve McQueen was one of the first people to be part of Belstaff and I am a huge fan of his.''

''Just to be part of this, as a biker, is great: after so many years of playing football I now spend a lot of time riding bikes. And to have clothes like that is great.''

Beckham - who recently unveiled his latest underwear campaign for H&M - praised Belstaff for creating a fashionable yet functional collection of waterproof jackets as he claims he used to find it impossible to find one.

According to The Telegraph newspaper, the 38-year-old superstar explained: ''When I started riding and looking at bikes I was looking for a jacket that looks cool but keeps you safe as well. But it was difficult to find one.

''Then I went into this vintage store and came across this vintage Belstaff jacket. I wear that for riding all the time... but I'm happy with this one [from Cooper's autumn collection] too!''