Cheap thrills: Racing custom Coleman mini bikes with Icon

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by ICON Motosports
Our friends at Icon Motosports have a few screws loose—and we mean that as a compliment. The riding gear they produce is wild, but the bikes they build in their Portland workshop are even wilder.

So when Icon decided to spice up the annual dealer show of parent company Parts Unlimited, things got real weird, real quick. They decided to rally their friends in the biz, and organize a no-holds-barred custom challenge…with Coleman BT200X mini bikes.

Coleman BT200X mini bike
Arizona-based Coleman jumped on board with six BT200Xs: tiny air-cooled mini bikes that normally cost $799. They’re powered by a 196cc four-stroke single, weigh less than 140 pounds, and are good for a top speed of 20 mph.

The ICON Mini Bike Roundup was underway. Icon took one BT200X for themselves, then handed out the rest to Biltwell Inc, S&S Cycle, Performance Machine, The Speed Merchant and LA Choppers.

Each shop was under strict instructions to do whatever the heck they wanted, without removing anything from the frame or motor. Here’s how five of those six bikes turned out…

Coleman BT200X mini bike
ICON 1000 Remember ICON 1000’s mental Suzuki Katana build, New Jack? Well, thanks to “a mixture of fan art inspiration and a vodka drink named the Ryobi,” the crew decided to build a tribute: Half Jack. And we’re so glad they did.

Half Jack’s tank and fairings look so right, because they’re real aftermarket Katana parts. The seat’s actually the stock Coleman unit, flipped front to back and re-upholstered by Range Needle Work.

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by ICON Motosports
ICON did some crazy suspension work too. The front end’s off a Ducati Monster (yes, really), and there’s now an actual swing arm out back, hooked up to a Nitron Racing piggyback shock. Other bits include aftermarket Grom wheels, EBC rotors, Magura controls, a Vortex sprocket and a Regina chain.

As for the paint job, that’s straight out of a rattle can. “It’s still covered in some beer from when someone took a keg and sprayed it all over the riders,” the guys tell us. “Personally, we think it adds to its charm.” [Icon 1000]

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by Biltwell Inc
Biltwell Inc. When Biltwell got the invitation to throw down on mini bikes, they were instantly keen. So they handed their Coleman over to their “resident R&D nerd,” Westy, to prep for the festivities.

Westy’s approach was simple, yet highly effective: throw a bunch of rad parts at it. So this Coleman is now sporting new Biltwell handlebars and grips, with a second set repurposed on the bar bends for reasons unknown. Westy also added one of the company’s pillion pads up front, as what we’re guessing is a crotch-saver.

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by Performance Machine
With the mods done, Biltwell hauled the Coleman over to Pete ‘HotDog’ Finlan, who laid down some pin striping and lettering to push it over the line. (How great are those Firestone logos on the tires?)

“Fast forward to race night…brand co-founder and man of too many words, Harold ‘McGoo’ McGruther, and our stateside dealer rep, Randy ‘Randingo’ Hernandez, paired up to throw elbows and cut corners, in what turned out to be a fun night at one of our favorite trade shows.” [Biltwell Inc]

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by S&S Cycle
S&S Cycle As high-performance experts, S&S Cycle were surely way out of their ballpark working on a Coleman mini bike. But they went bananas anyway, giving their BT200X a true ‘go fast, turn left’ vibe, inspired by the Indian flat track race team they sponsor.

The treated their pint-sized tracker to a stage one kit and torque convertor from Go Powersports, along with a high flow air cleaner. The exhaust is custom, while the bars, grips and pegs all came from Biltwell. As for the tail unit, that had been sitting on the S&S shelf for some time. So the guys welded some brackets to the frame and installed it.

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by S&S Cycle
“Testing consisted of an unanticipated wheelie in my driveway,” our contact at S&S tells us, “and a brief ride around the neighborhood. We’ve since put it on our test tack and smile every time we huck it into a corner.”

“Look for some snow tracker action and likely my hip popping out at some point in December.” [S&S Cycle]

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by Performance Machine
Performance Machine This entry looks like the world’s smallest—and funnest—chopper. “The Coleman bikes are pretty cool out of the box,” the team tells us, “so all it took was a few key parts to make it even cooler.”

Up top are a set of Burly Brand ape hangars, matched up to some custom machining on the triple clamp to make them fit. The grips and throttle housing are from Performance Machine’s own catalog, and the throttle cable’s another Burly Brand part.

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by Performance Machine
Other in-house parts include the headlight and gas cap. Saddlemen hooked the guys up with a sweet new perch, and Burly Brand supplied the pegs and one of their ‘bar bags,’ which now acts as a mini pannier.

Oh yeah, there’s a stage one kit from Go Powersports too. So this Coleman is… really quick? [Performance Machine]

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by The Speed Merchant
The Speed Merchant Team Speed Merchant were so enamored with the stock BT200X, it took them a couple of days to figure out what to do. But once they got cracking, the mini bike slowly morphed into a tiny clone of a H-D Fat Bob build they’d done a year and a half ago (right down to the paint).

Like S&S, Speed Merchant hooked up the motor with a stage one kit and torque convertor, plus a bigger sprocket at the rear. Then they made their own muffler by drilling out a piece of tubing. “It makes for a proper mini hooligan bike,” they say. “Loud and obnoxious.”

Coleman BT200X mini bike custom by The Speed Merchant
Saddlemen supplied the flat track tail section, and Speed Merchant fabricated a quick subframe to support it. There’s a mountain bike shock wedged in there to provide a little compliance.

There’s a custom gas tank up top, but it’s not in use. The team didn’t get round to hooking it up, but it looked so good, they didn’t have the heart to remove it either. As a final touch, they added roughly five to six inches of extra height to the bars, then coated them to match the frame.

“This bike is so much fun,” Speed Merchant tell us, “it’s become the transport of choice for us when we are in the pits at the races. Can’t wait for more pull-start racing!” [The Speed Merchant]

Racing Coleman mini bikes
Everyone made it to Madison, WI in one piece, and rolled down to the Paradise Lounge where shenanigans ensued. Racing kicked off with a Le Mans-style start, followed by wheelie and burnout contests, keg rolling, two-up racing and slow racing.

“The whole experience was pretty amazing,” our ICON contacts report. “For most of us, mini bikes are where our moto obsession started. Coleman and our friends magically helped us to tap into our eight-year-old selves, when it was all about having fun.”

Racing Coleman mini bikes