Icon Low Down & Shifty XS650

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Most moto clothing brands take themselves very seriously. But there’s a thick seam of irreverence running through the DNA of Icon. They don’t play games with their motorcycle apparel, but the bikes they build are eclectic, original and often downright crazy.

“Low Down & Shifty” is based on a 1974 Yamaha XS650, and it’s one of the most extreme XS creations we’ve ever seen. The custom cro-moly frame is wrapped in the bare minimum of hand-formed aluminum bodywork, which also conceals the fuel tank.

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The front end is from a Hayabusa. Indeed, virtually all that remains of the original machine is the engine, and even this has been extensively modified. It’s had a capacity boost to 750cc, and runs hot cams and dual Mikuni carbs fed via Pingel petcocks. Spark comes from a Boyer ignition and the pipes have been stolen from a MotoCzysz C1, one of the most technologically advanced motorcycles ever made. (Yes, there’s irony there.)

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Icon freely admit that this XS650 has “oblique ergonomics, kidney-rupturing suspension, limited lighting and almost no fuel range.” And if you detect an apocalyptic, devil-may-care vibe to this build, you’re right.

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The XS was created for the launch of the second Icon 1000 collection, which is revealed today. The new gear mixes raw, gritty styling with classic lines and the latest protection technology—including D3O armor. Check out the new range of jackets, boots, gloves and more here.

You can also keep in touch with all things Icon via their Limiter blog and Facebook page.

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