You don’t see many vintage BMWs with red frames. But to my eyes, this R75/6 strangely works. The project comes from Portugal’s Maria Riding Company, and started with an order for a seat.
“Our client also had a rebuilt engine and a few other parts,” reports Luis Correia of Maria. “But there was no overall concept for the bike. So we decided to re-think it all over.”
It was Maria’s first BMW R-series build, and Correia had reservations. “In the beginning we were a little bit skeptical—a R75/6 from 1976 has a few technical limitations.”
Maria decided to build a bike that felt smaller and sat lower than the original, with the wheels dominating the overall look more. “Not the thin and shy wheels that came with it originally!”
New aluminum rims and Firestone AMS tires were fitted, with the wider back wheel adjusted to the left to clear the shaft drive. Correia and his crew then welded on a new subframe with a large tube diameter—to increase strength and create a more uniform and robust look. “It was interesting to mix the classic look with something more aggressive,” he says.
The front suspension was rebuilt and shortened a little, with stubby Bitubo shocks dropping the rear end to match. The tank was reprofiled to suit the lower stance, the battery was hidden, and the airbox was modified to clean up the gap behind the engine. Simple controls and instruments add to the clean look.
And that frame ..? “The red was risky,” Correia admits. “But the final result turned out great with the black and steel finishes. People who know our work know that we love to take risks with color.”