Motorcycles

Twisted-metal BMW takes out Best of Show in Verona

Twisted-metal BMW takes out Be...
The work of two Milanese custom shops, Project BMW R1100S is a symphony of metal
The work of two Milanese custom shops, Project BMW R1100S is a symphony of metal
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A steampunk touch of brass on the cylinder heads
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A steampunk touch of brass on the cylinder heads
Custom engine covers and exhausts
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Custom engine covers and exhausts
Robot-eye headlight and single front shock
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Robot-eye headlight and single front shock
Front headlight and minimal wiring
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Front headlight and minimal wiring
Rear shock and rising underseat pipes
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Rear shock and rising underseat pipes
The work of two Milanese custom shops, Project BMW R1100S is a symphony of metal
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The work of two Milanese custom shops, Project BMW R1100S is a symphony of metal
Not what you'd call a touring seat
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Not what you'd call a touring seat
Wickedly slim tail unit with exhaust exits
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Wickedly slim tail unit with exhaust exits
What could've been a mish-mash of mismatched elements works beautifully here
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What could've been a mish-mash of mismatched elements works beautifully here
The bike has been stripped to its bones and rebuilt with shiny metal everywhere
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The bike has been stripped to its bones and rebuilt with shiny metal everywhere
Flowing trellis front frame
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Flowing trellis front frame
Best in Show at this year's Verona's Motor Bike Expo
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Best in Show at this year's Verona's Motor Bike Expo
The bulk of that big ol' boxer at its heart
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The bulk of that big ol' boxer at its heart
View gallery - 13 images

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.

The bulk of that big ol' boxer at its heart
The bulk of that big ol' boxer at its heart

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.

Source: Officine Mermaid via BikeEXIF

View gallery - 13 images
1 comment
buzzclick
Very cool and organic iron horse. Lots of buffing and polish. The funky circular TIG welds on the exhaust pipes instead of using a tube bender. Lots of details you may not notice right away. No fork for the rear axle using a massive driveshaft housing and exposing the left completely. Headlamp could've been in somewhat a larger housing. No place for a license plate. lol