Twisted-metal BMW takes out Best of Show in Verona
Posted here for your gratuitous drooling is the winner of Best in Show at this year's Verona Motor Bike Expo in Italy. Starting life as a BMW R1100S, this beast has been stripped to the bones and rebuilt as a celebration of shiny metal.
Built as a partnership between Milanese companies Radikal Chopper and Officine Mermaid, "Project BMW R1100S" is an eye-catching amalgamation of hand-made metal parts that look like they shouldn't fit together at all.
Take those rigid-looking girder forks, for example, all strength and bulk and straight lines, echoed by the rear section of the frame. Connecting the two is an elegant spider's web of flowing trellis, looking like an alien skeleton as if the gleaming, smooth skin has been peeled back from the tank and tail unit.
Then the wheels, with their razor-thin spoke pattern, or the insectile, segmented titanium welds of the nasty-looking undertail exhausts. Or the single robot-eye headlight. Or the steampunk cylinder covers with their brass highlights. And at the center of it all, the bulk of that big black boxer twin, recalling aircraft engines of old.
It shouldn't work. It doesn't feel like it has a right to. It should be a cacophany of mismatched ideas, each stamping on the others' toes. But it does work, and it's beautiful and proportional and evil in all the right ways. You wouldn't want to ride it – dear god, no – but as a piece of automotive art it's a bit of a triumph. Great stuff.
Jump into the gallery for lots more close-ups of the work.