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Speed Read, 22 November 2020

The latest motorcycle news and customs
A Ducati 848 that pays homage to the classic 750 SuperSport, a lean, mean and green Triumph Thruxton RS, and an easy-going BMW R65 scrambler. Plus news that BSA are set to resume production.

Ducati 848 cafe racer by JC Racing
Ducati 848 by JC Racing This is only the second Ducati superbike that Frenchman Jérémie Duchampt has customized—but he’s already cracked the code. Starting with a stock 2011-model Ducati 848 Evo, Jérémie decided to build a modern take on the classic 750 SuperSport.

This build is a clever mash-up of parts, along with some wild design ideas. The sharp fairing is a carbon fiber unit from designed Paolo Tesio’s company, Tex Design. Jérémie modified it to fit, and added a small Plexiglas headlight cover and screen to it.

Ducati 848 cafe racer by JC Racing
He also built an all-new subframe, then capped it off with a fiberglass tail section, made to spec by FF Prodesign. The tail and fairing both complement the OEM tank perfectly, creating a silhouette that tapers sharply towards the front. Smaller pieces in between, like new intake ducts, help tie everything together.

Ducati 848 cafe racer by JC Racing
The exhaust is particularly interesting—it runs up under the seat, but then exits on top of the tail hump rather than out the back. Jérémie also upgraded the Ducati with an Öhlins rear shock, a Lithium-ion battery, LED lighting and a bunch of carbon fiber trim pieces.

Topped off with a livery that’s straight out of 1975, this cafe racer is a compelling mash-up of old and new [JC Racing]

Custom Triumph Thruxton RS by Unikat
Triumph Thruxton RS by Unikat Motorworks The Triumph Thruxton RS is the most performance-oriented modern classic that Triumph sells. Its motor has the best tune of all Triumph’s Bonneville models, and it comes with adjustable Showa and Öhlins suspension out the box. But what if you want the Thruxton’s performance, but not its classic cafe racer looks?

Simple: you set Poland’s Unikat Motorworks loose on it. That’s what the owner of this Thruxton RS did, with a very simple brief. Unikat’s client wanted even more top shelf components, graffiti logos and a hit of lime green. The result might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it sure is bold.

Custom Triumph Thruxton RS by Unikat
To give the Thruxton a less classic, burlier stance, Unikat shortened the tail and capped it off with a small custom-made cowl. They ditched the classic taillight assembly for a slim LED item, and fitted a stubby LED headlight up front to match. The tank is stock, but the Triumph’s lines are way different now.

Other upgrades include tubeless Kineo wire-spoked wheels, wrapped in Heidenau supermotard tires. Unikat stripped the front forks to have them anodized black, and swapped the rear shocks for high-end Bitubo units.

Custom Triumph Thruxton RS by Unikat
The stubby twin exhaust system looks like it runs straight through, but it actually has internal baffles, so that it sounds good without being obnoxiously loud.

Unikat also fitted new clip-ons, with Rizoma reservoirs and personalized Womet-Tech levers. But the biggest job was refinishing the smaller parts in black. The Thruxton RS is a modern bike, and stripping all the little parts off for powder coating (and putting them back) took much longer than expected. [Unikat Motorworks]

BSA Motorcycles
BSA reborn, and electric A historic British marque is set to resume production—but not as you’d expect. Indian billionaire (and chairman of Mahindra Group) Anand Mahindra has just outlined his plans for the Birmingham Small Arms brand. And it involves batteries.

Mahindra Group, which is the world’s largest tractor manufacturer, purchased BSA back in 2016, but there hasn’t been much talk about what they planned to do with it, until now. The plan is to set up a new facility in Oxford, England, and release two new models next year: an internal combustion motorcycle, followed by an electric one.

BSA Motorcycles
There are a couple of takeaways here. First off, this isn’t the first time Mahindra have dipped their toes in the motorcycle industry; they relaunched the Jawa brand two years ago. Secondly, the decision to develop and manufacture bikes in the UK is a smart one, since it’ll be hard for potential customers to imagine a BSA that isn’t made in Old Blighty.

But more than anything, it’s exciting to see another brand push into electric technology. Some die-hard vintage bike fans might scoff at an electric BSA—but we can’t wait to see how it turns out. [Source]

BMW R65 scrambler by Gas & Oil
BMW R65 by Gas & Oil Bespoke Motorcycles Are there any new ways to customize classic BMW boxers? Probably not, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to do them well. This 1983 R65 by Gas & Oil in the Czech Republic doesn’t break any new ground—but it’s attractive, tidy, and looks perfect as a classic daily runner.

BMW R65 scrambler by Gas & Oil
The biggest changes are a vintage Yamaha tank up top, a new leather seat, and a reworked subframe. Gas & Oil propped the rear up on a new pair of YSS shocks, and ditched the airbox for a pair of K&N filters. The battery’s been swapped for a smaller unit, and relocated to a custom-made box in front of the swingarm.

The cockpit’s kitted with high-and-wide Renthal bars and grips, and a single dial. Those are matched to the stock switches and controls, with a small chromed headlight out front.

BMW R65 scrambler by Gas & Oil
The overall vibe screams Sunday morning scrambler, but in a practical sense. There are no knobblies or pipe wrap here; just mild dual-purpose tires from Dunlop, and ceramic coated headers that terminate in a pair of classic ‘cigar’ mufflers. Oh, and it has fenders at both ends, too. [Gas & Oil Bespoke Motorcycles | Images by Ondřej Ždichynec]

BMW R65 scrambler by Gas & Oil

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