Author Archives: Tad Diemer

Suzuki August 14, 2014 posted by Tad Diemer

More 80’s Madness! 1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf Replica

Update 8.14.2014: I had this post scheduled for today but the listing was pulled down early. Anyone from here snag it? Thanks for the post Tad. -dc

The term “race replica” gets thrown around pretty often. But as racing machinery has become more and more specialized, race replicas have become more and more of an “in name only” proposition, a paint and tape job featuring the exact same technical specifications, with a higher price and additional free advertising for the sponsors. I mean, I love the Repsol Hondas, but let’s be honest: they’ve got little to nothing in common with the race bikes.

But that wasn’t always the case, and Suzuki’s RG500 Gamma was much closer to the real thing than you’re likely to find at the dealer today.

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma R Side

Another one of the unusual powerplants from the wild-west period of the 1980’s is this Suzuki RG500 Gamma and its square four. Basically two water-cooled parallel twins geared to a common crankshaft, it was powerful, lightweight and, compared to Yamaha’s RD500, was much less compromised for the road: weighing in at under 400lbs dry, it made almost 100bhp at the crank. With typically brutal two-stroke power delivery and a short wheelbase that made it a very serious tool for experienced riders.

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma Tank

While “Walter Wolf” sounds like the villain from a James Bond film or possibly a children’s cartoon, it was actually the name of oil magnate and motorsports lover/sponsor who sponsored teams at the highest level of competition in both Formula 1 and Moto GP. Walter Wolf was born in Austria, but a Canadian citizen and the racing team was based out of the UK. Still with me? He’s quite a character, and still very much alive, although much of his story is too long and strange to recount here…

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma Rear Engine

From the original eBay listing: 1986 RG500 Gamma Walter Wolf Replica

This 1986 Walter Wolf RG500 is in beautiful condition for its age. All pictures are recently taken. The bike does have a few flaws such as one of the side rear panels is missing a tab on the right side the front fairing has been repaired do to cracking which appears to be very well done. The belly pan has some gas damage as well as a few scratches. I have been a collector of the 2 stoke street bikes and I don’t like being surprised and don’t want to surprise anyone else so I will disclose everything I know about this gamma. The rear brake is not leaking but could possibly use a rebuild or bleeding. The bike runs very well with fresh tires and battery. Pictures do not do this beauty justice this bike is stunning in person. It has gross valves and air filters on it and also comes with stock seat and air box parts. The belly pan is not really too visible but it is damaged from fuel. There is a small repair of the sticker in the picture and the clock foam has a small imperfection

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma Dash

Production for the Gamma isn’t exactly rare by European bike standards, with just north of 9,000 built between 1985 and 1987. But with only 100 genuine Walter Wolf replicas produced in total, these are a rare edition of an already very desirable bike. It’s located in Cali, but it’s not clear if the bike is titled for road use, which would make this “WW” even more special.

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma Front Wheel

With a $20,000 starting bid, there are no takers as yet, although that seems like a pretty fair price, considering what regular Gammas go for… And that black and red paint really flatters the slightly slab-sided styling of the bike.

-tad

1986 Suzuki RG500 Gamma R Side No Fairing

More 80’s Madness! 1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf Replica
Honda August 12, 2014 posted by Tad Diemer

Featured Listing: Titled 1994 Honda RC45 For Sale

Update: This bike was sold within two days of listing on RSBFS exclusively using our Featured Listing service. Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

Homologation specials sometimes might seem like pretty poor deals from a “performance-for-the-dollar” perspective: they’re intended to make sure manufacturers can use certain parts or even whole machines for production-based racing, so the road bike is going to be priced like the very low-volume exotic it is, but may be somewhat restricted for street use and lack some of the elements that will make the racing machine competitive on track. So you get exotic technology and exotic price in a package that isn’t necessarily any faster than lesser machines.

But for folks who want something truly special, a bike with such direct links to racing is worth any price, and Honda’s RC bikes are very, very special indeed.

1994 RC45 R Side

Honda’s RVF750R RC45 was their follow up to the iconic RC30, a bike that won the World Super Bike Championship in both 1988 and 1989.

The RC45 was powered by 749cc, 90° V4 with gear-driven cams and while displacement was almost the same as the earlier RC30, the cam gears were moved to the side of the engine to improve packaging and the bore/stroke were changed significantly, making the engine more oversquare to reduce piston speed and increase revs.

A sophisticated fuel injection system fed the almost impossibly smooth engine, a slipper clutch helped with downshifts, and a single-sided swingarm made tire changes fast and easy during endurance racing.

1994 RC45 Front Rear

The RC45 is perhaps the ideal package: it’s one of the best-looking sportbikes of all time, with a nearly perfect balance of purposeful, understated aggression and a wealth of exotic details to capture the eye of cognoscenti, all wrapped up with Honda reliability and attention to detail.

But with only 105hp at the rear wheel, the RC45 was just a bit faster than a 600 of the time, making the nearly $27,000 this cost new a very tough sell. Or it would have been a tough sell, if they had attempted to sell very many…

1994 RC45 Front and Fairing

With only 200 made worldwide and approximately 50 sent to the US, these are extremely rare, with as few as 20 circulating among US collectors. And the seller offers a choice to the buyer: keep this in its current, museum-ready condition, or have him prep it for road-use.

Contact the Seller via Email

From the seller: 1994 Honda RC45 for Sale

US-spec 1994 Honda RC45 for sale.  Number 47 of only 50 produced for the US market in 1994, of which 20+ were delivered to private race teams… very, very rare bike with valid title. The bike was manufactured February 1994 and originally titled in California.  It currently has a valid Florida title. The motorcycle is located in central Florida.

This RC45 is in exceptional condition with only 6,001 miles. The bike has been in a museum since 2008 and was professionally prepped for display. Please look at the pictures to see that there are almost no nicks anywhere on the bike. It is 100% OEM.  The buyer has a choice; available in its current pristine museum form, or I will prepare it for the road. I guarantee there are no flaws with this bike. I have sold off most of my 21 bike Honda collection over the past 3 years and have received zero complaints. I only have this RC45 and a pristine RC30 left from the collection.

Contact the Seller via Email

Out of the box, the RC45 was not as immediately successful as its predecessor: it won races, but it took a while to fine-tune the bike’s handling and get it right, and Honda scored only a single WSB title with the bike. While the RC45’s history wasn’t quite as illustrious as the RC30, it was a hugely versatile machine that won regularly at the Isle of Man TT and in endurance racing in the years following its WSB career.

1994 RC45 Underseat

Then and now, these are expensive machines. Expensive, but very polished, with smooth power and stable, but nimble handling. And whatever the price of the road bike, Honda fans can’t put a price on being able to get this close to what is literally a race-bike for the road. With an asking price of $28,000 and a seller who clearly loves the marque, this looks like a great opportunity for the right buyer!

-tad

1994 R Rear Suspension

Featured Listing: Titled 1994 Honda RC45 For Sale
Honda August 10, 2014 posted by Tad Diemer

Quirky Track Day Fun: 1985 Honda NS400R for Sale

While I’m not the biggest fan of the 1980’s in terms of style, I love the free-for-all philosophy that went into motorcycle design of the period: four-strokes, two-strokes, and rotaries. Turbos. One, two, three, and four cylinder engines, innovative suspensions, and all manner of weirdness.

This Honda NSR400R embodies some of the best features of the era, when experimentation and new ideas seemed to be popping out of the woodwork.

1985 Honda NSR400R R Front

In general, Honda has become a very conservative manufacturer, although a few of their more recent offerings show off a bit of that old experimental spirit as they try to produce some actually useful, interesting motorcycles for normal riders, instead of chasing the ever-decreasing market share of pure headbanging motorcycles we’re all here to read about.

1985 Honda NSR400R L Rear

All of Honda’s NSR bikes are pure racing or race-replica two-stroke motorcycles, often over-the-counter, turnkey factory race bikes like the NSR250. The NSR400R fell into the latter category: a streetbike meant to evoke Honda’s pure race machines.

1985 Honda NSR400R Dash

This bike featured a liquid-cooled, two-stroke 90° V3 with the two flanking cylinders canted forward and the middle one pointing up, and put 72hp through a six-speed transmission, making it very quick for a middleweight sports machine. Period reviews refer to it being a very polished bike, with little of the unrefined frenzy common to two-strokes: liquid cooling quiets the clatter somewhat, and Honda’s ATAC power-valve smooths the power delivery and plumps up the low end. Power still comes on in a two-stroke rush, just a more dignified, manageable rush. Very Honda.

With unusual modular wheels and very light weight, handling was some of the best of the period, which makes the fact that these weren’t available in the States more of a shame.

1985 Honda NSR400R L Front

From the original eBay listing: 1985 NSR400R for Sale

Very rare 3 cylinder 2 stroke purchased from a private Honda collection in the Northeast got home put fresh gas in it and started right up. 13,392 original miles very nice condition sorry no title.

With the slightly dull, all-black fairings instead of customary Honda graphics or the traditional red/white/blue paint, and a bit of surface rust on the exhaust, this is clearly meant for one thing and one thing only: budget track-day thrashing. With workman like number-plates, safety wiring, and Dzuz fasteners for easy maintenance, it has all the features required and keeps costs down.

1985 Honda NSR400R R Rearset

But that’s a shame, since such a cool bike deserves at least a nice, ten-foot track bike paint job. At the very least, I’d get some aftermarket fairings painted up decently and ditch those stuck on numberplates for a solo-tailpiece and a bit of foam padding: if you can’t title this thing for the road, you might as well go all-in!

Honestly, I’d love to pick something like this up. My main concern would be finding good tires for it!

-tad

1985 Honda NSR400R R Side

Quirky Track Day Fun: 1985 Honda NS400R for Sale
Suzuki August 4, 2014 posted by Tad Diemer

Thuggish Survivor: 1990 GSX-R 1100 for Sale

Well, this GSX-R 1100 is definitely one of those bikes that wasn’t especially rare when new, but has become so by being a survivor: “Gixxers” of all displacements are much used and abused. 600’s get treated as “starter bikes” by noobs and crashed left and right. 750’s get raced, stunted, tracked, the 1100’s get drag-raced, and finally they all get parted-out when they’ve suffered one crash too many.

So “slingshots” in relatively pristine condition are pretty hard to come by, although this one is a bit less than stock under the skin…

1990 Suzuki GSXR 1100 L Side Front

It’s not completely original but is, as the seller describes, a “sleeper”. The 1100 is a fast bike, even by today’s standards and this one, bored out to 1340cc’s and 190hp should be terrifyingly fast in a straight line, and possibly more so in the corners: while the 750 was the original race-replica and had some of the best handling available at the time, the bigger 1100 was heavier and far less nimble.

1990 Suzuki GSXR 1100 R Side Fairing

I have a great issue of SuperBike magazine from 1998 that covers four notoriously piggish machines and how to fix them, including the GSX-R 1100. Titled “WrestleMania” it described the bike as “… quite pretty. To look at, sure, but never to ride.” It’s obviously exaggerating a bit for effect, but their point is taken: handling was stable, but far from nimble.

1990 Suzuki GSXR 1100 Tank Detail

The article blames a frame that carries weight way too high and makes the bike top-heavy. Luckily, there are a million shops that work on these and parts are readily available if you want to improve things a bit, and some bits from the 750 and later models will bolt right on.

Modern sport-touring bikes leave me pretty cold in general, but I bet something like this could be made to eat up miles in retro-style…

1990 Suzuki GSXR 1100 Dash

From the original eBay listing: 1990 Suzuki GSX-R 1100 for Sale

Here’s your chance to buy one of the baddest old school Gixxers around. 11k original miles, looks like a total sleeper, original 1127 motor built to 1340cc, (190 hp) APE cylinders, custom ground cams, Wiseco pistons, top end oiler kit, braided oil lines, Carrillo rods, 38mm Mikuni flatslides. Brand new Michelins Pilot Pure 2CT, 48T rear sprocket, battery. Yoshimura Duplex exhaust, Original Yoshimura carb covers, Fox twin clicker shock. Body work is all original paint and in excellent condition, a few small flaws. Bike never been crashed or even tipped over. This bike was built to drag race but I put it back on the street. Still has NOS (bottle removed but will be included), air shifter is there but not connected, shift light, Schnitz Pro Street ignition controller, etc. Totally street legal now. Currently registered until June 2015. Bike runs great, very streetable and tons of torque. You can’t even build a motor like this one for reserve asking price..

1990 Suzuki GSXR 1100 L Side Fairing2

I’m not typically a fan of Japanese motorcycles. A bit too mass-market and committee-think, their cars and bikes look like a bunch of designers sat around to discuss their individual goals, then the resulting bike is a hodge-podge of conflicting priorities. They are amazing machines, but they look bland to me, with all the passion optimized out of them. And growing up in the 80’s and 90’s, these things were everywhere, shrieking around, piloted by riders with little gear and fewer brains, so I lumped all the garishly-painted plastic rockets together.

1990 Suzuki GSXR 1100 Carb Detail

But the 1988-1990 GSX-R’s have a purity of line that I really like. It was actually Icon [yeah, the apparel guys] that got me hooked on these: the builds they post up on their site are usually all ratbike, Mad Max-styled weirdness, but they did one very simple, classic build of a GSX-R 750 that got me thinking. They’re simple and well-proportioned, and those dual-headlights suggest endurance racing and the simple goal of speed at all costs.

In classic blue-and-white paint, in very presentable condition with none of the cheesy aftermarket weirdness these so often feature, this bike has mods in all the right places and a price that seems to offer a whole lot of bang for the buck.

-tad

1990 Suzuki GSXR 1100 R Side

Thuggish Survivor: 1990 GSX-R 1100 for Sale
Aprilia July 31, 2014 posted by Tad Diemer

Function over Form: 1999 Aprilia RSV1000 Mille SP for Sale

The first-generation Aprilia RSV Mille  is a pug-ugly bike. There, I said it. The styling is bulbous and overwrought, with weird, gimmicky details and bits that don’t really hang together.

Look, owners and fans can spare me the outraged comments: I really like these, and I’d take one over almost any Japanese sportbike you could name. I’d take “ugly but distinctive” over “pleasing but bland” all week long and twice on Sunday.

1999 Aprilia RSV Mille SP R Fairing

And the disjointed stealth-fighter design is certainly distinctive: there’s nothing else like it on the road and, in an era where the easiest way to tell bike brands apart is by what paint jobs they’re wearing, a defining corporate style is no small thing. But who cares what it looks like anyway? These things just flat work.

1999 Aprilia RSV Mille SP R Rear

At first glance, it looks very much like Aprilia simply stuffed a big v-twin into their pretty RS250’s frame. The bike was designed to compete directly on road and track against Ducati’s 916, but Aprilia definitely did its own thing: no perfect primary balance 90° twin here. They went with a very compact 998cc 60° motor from Rotax for packaging, fitted with twin balance shafts to smooth things out.

1999 Aprilia RSV Mille SP Engine Detail

Someday, the styling may be considered classic, but for now the dated looks just mean that prices for these very capable machines are relatively low, considering the performance on tap. This one, however, isn’t quite so affordable, and for good reason…

From the original eBay listing: 1999 Aprilia RSV Mille SP

This is a 1999 Aprilia RSV 1000 Mille SP (sport production) number 147 of 150. The Mille SP is one of the rarest Aprilias made, a 1000cc 60 degree V-twin Superbike. Just 150 were built, which was the minimum requirement for Aprilia to enter the Superbike World Championship.  Even fewer made it Stateside.

It’s a true homologation bike, not just a body work replica. Nearly every meaningful part is different from the standard Mille. The engine, built with input from Cosworth, has sand cast cases and a different bore and strike. The frame has adjustable engine position, steering head angle and swingarm pivot. Tuning by way of a race chip and not an ECU. The fairing is carbon-fibre. The exhaust is true duels with twin cans. The fuel tank is aluminum and the Öhlins suspension are fully adjustable.   Dry weight is 407lbs (about the same as a Ducati 996R and nearly 70lbs lighter than its sister Mille R.) Horsepower said to be near 150 with a reported top speed of 173.36 mph (versus 167.7 mph for the Mille R and 167.8 for the Ducati 996R).  As far as Aprilia goes, this is the one to have, the first year homologation entry. In 1999, Aprilia finished 6th. (Ducati was 1).

This Aprilia came out of a collection from California and has just 984 original miles. It comes with factory-correct DOT lightweight street wheels (magnesium wheels were not approved by DOT back then). The bike was just serviced by a certified race-proven tech at Eurosports in Coopersburg PA (an Aprilia dealer) and needs nothing.

I love that the SP actually has adjustable engine mounting points. Keep in mind that the SP is not simply a chip-tune and exhaust job. It is in fact a heavily revised, shorter-stroke version with significant input from Cosworth, as mentioned above.

1999 Aprilia RSV Mille SP Dash

Reliability for the RSV is generally better than equivalent Ducatis and service intervals less frequent. They’re also a bit roomier for larger riders, with a slightly more humane riding position. All-in-all, a funky alternative to folks not sold on Ducati hype, or those who believe that appearances are secondary to function.

Or for those who just love bikes with jagged, stealth fighter looks.

-tad

1999 Aprilia RSV Mille SP R Side Rear

Function over Form: 1999 Aprilia RSV1000 Mille SP for Sale
Yamaha July 30, 2014 posted by Tad Diemer

Small Things In Small Packages: 1986 Yamaha FZR250

Looking to get into sportbikes, but thinking maybe a used GSX-R1000 is a bit much? And maybe a Ninja 250 looks and sounds a bit too cheap, and is maybe a bit too common? Well this rare little gem of a Yamaha FZR250 might just be the ticket!

1986 Yamaha FZ250 L Side

Made between 1986-1988 with a shrieking 250cc four-cylinder that redlined at 17,000 rpm and managed to punch out 45hp, this may have been small-displacement, but it offered very real performance. Later models were designated the FZR250R and got Yamaha’s EXUP valve. These were originally intended for the Japanese market only, but some of these have managed to find their way overseas.

1986 Yamaha FZ250 Clocks

From the original eBay listing: 1986 Yamaha FZR250 for Sale

This is a very rare 86 FZR250, probably only a handful in the states, and fewer with a CA title. Cosmetically it is not perfect, but mechanically is very solid, it has had a very thorough going through and it carburates beautifully and runs like a sewing machine. Recent oil change and coolant, and last week just did fork seals and fresh brake fluid front and rear.

Please look at the pictures closely and email or call with any questions. This is a rare Japanese model not imported in the states.

Major flaws are a poor paint job, small rip in pax seat, slightly faded switchgear and it is sporting older rubber. All of these things are easily sorted! You can buy cheap Chinese painted kits or spend a little time and money and make it very nice. This is an incredibly rare grey bike that needs a new home, and it is a bit out of place in my Honda collection.

Very original, will be an easy clean up and restore or even ride as is. Please check out the pics closely and let me know if you need more or of any other part of the bike not pictured.

This bike is not in perfect condition, but should clean up nicely. It’s obviously been down on the left side at some point, but it looks like a decent new paint job on the fairings would get you close to where you’d want to be. The original listing does include some very clear, high-resolution images so you can get a good feel for what you’re getting into. And while you should always be careful with a grey-market bike, that CA title and registration goes a long way toward increasing buyer confidence concerning this machine.

1986 Yamaha FZ250 R Side Fairing

While 45hp may not sound like all that much, it’s also nothing to sneeze at and should allow for a rider to exploit all of the bike’s power with minimal fear of it biting back. It’s not a “starter bike” — it’s a bike to learn about serious cornering, one you can grow into with time and experience, not simply use as a stepping stone to bigger bikes.

And experienced riders could keep this thing pinned basically all the time. As the saying goes: “It’s more fun to ride a slow bike fast than it is to ride a fast bike slow…”

1986 Yamaha FZ250 Dash

It is truly a shame that in the US, a 600cc supersport bike is considered a “learner”. Sportbikes of any displacement are far from ideal bikes for beginners in the first place. Their tall silhouette allows for maximum lean on track, but makes it hard to put your feet down flat. They can be reasonably comfortable on the move, but you’re perched over the bars, feet tucked up under you, making them very awkward to maneuver at low speeds, and limited steering lock just makes things worse. And modern 600’s make well north of 100hp, power that no first-time rider should have access to, combined with handling far beyond what a new rider can exploit.

We’re breeding generations of motorcyclists who have had the crutch of speed to hide very limited riding skills. Having been to a few bike nights frequented by the sportbike crowd, I can safely say the skill level of the Cephalopoda inexperius or Common Road Squid found all over the United States is very, very low. If they’d learned on something like this Yamaha FZR250 instead of Hayabusas, that might not be the case

-tad

1986 Yamaha FZ250 L Side Rear

Small Things In Small Packages: 1986 Yamaha FZR250
Ducati July 29, 2014 posted by Tad Diemer

Featured Listing: A True Race Replica – 2008 Ducati Desmosedici

Update 8.27.14: I’ve been alerted that this bike is now sold. Thanks again for choosing a Featured Listing Ted! -dc

Introduced in 2008, Ducati’s Desmosedici RR is perhaps the most collectable of modern Ducatis. Much more than just another WSB homologation-special or a tape-and-paint Repsol Honda, it’s a true race-replica sporting a genuine Moto GP V4, detuned slightly for road use.

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The Desmosedici [literally “Desmodromic Sixteen”] Racing Replica was based on Ducati’s moribund GP6 race bike and powered by a 989cc V4 making almost 200hp. Only 1500 were made and considering the price, it’s likely many of these have been cocooned in heated garages, displayed in living rooms, or packed away in unopened crates. Which is a real shame with top-shelf suspension, front and rear and a 200-section rear tire, this thing is the closest all but the very elite will ever get to riding a Moto GP motorcycle. A bike where you are the limiting factor.

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With a funky, catfish-like gaping air intake and bulbous fairings, it may not be the prettiest bike, but while Ducati could have designed a better-looking bike, that would be defeating the whole purpose of the exercise: a true replica of their GP machine, with some detuning for longevity and lights for road use. It was even fitted with an authentic 16.5” rear wheel. Make sure you budget for tires to fit that…

canvas

It does look purposeful, like nothing else on the road, and the thundering howl these make, especially with the new exhaust featured on this bike, will quickly erase any doubt about which bike just flashed past you down the main straight of whatever track you’re riding.

From the original listing on AutoMania: 2008 Ducati Desmosedici RR for Sale

The motorcycle was purchased new from Moto Corsa in Portland, Oregon by Michael Czysz of MotoCzysz fame. He returned the bike to MC when it had just over 1.600 miles and a local buyer brought it home. 300 miles later, moving has cost him the use of garage space and the bike has to be sold. While in his tenure, the accessory full on Race Exhaust System was installed, requiring the accessory Carbon Fiber Body work, for a mere extra $7,500. New tires were installed and an oil change completed. The $1000 rear stand, cover and books all come with the bike along with the stock exhaust system and body work.

canvass

These were originally $70k, with people paying more than that speculating on increasing prices. But this hasn’t happened yet, and may not for some time. These seem to trade in the upper $40k’s right where this is priced, and that exhaust and bodywork make it that much tastier: the original exhaust exited through the top of the tail section, which is just plain weird. It also makes me wonder how Jason Statham’s girlfriend rode on the back during filming of The Expendables…

Fairly priced with less than two-thousand miles on the clock and desirable upgrades. If you’ve been looking to jump into the Desmo market, this may be your chance.

-tad

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Featured Listing:  A True Race Replica – 2008 Ducati Desmosedici
Bimota July 22, 2014 posted by Tad Diemer

Simplify, and Then Add Lightness: 1993 Bimota DB2

Until very recently, Bimota’s exotic, Ducati-powered offerings like this DB2 featured the air/oil-cooled two-valve engines, instead of the more powerful four-valve water-cooled engines from the 851/916 models. This meant that, although the bikes weren’t the fastest straight-line performers, they were light and lithe, enabling riders to make good use of every horse available.

1993 Bimota DB2 L Side Front

This was originally, and perhaps ironically given that we’re talking about Italian exotica, a financial decision. The DB bikes have always been intended to sell well, and helped to keep the company afloat at different points in their history: with over 600 made, the original DB1 was about as mass-market as Bimota ever got. A little more than 400 of the later DB2 models were made, with production split between half and full-fairing styles, although I very much prefer the full-fairing on this particular example.

1993 Bimota DB2 Dash

From the original eBay listing: 1993 Bimota DB2 for Sale

Perhaps Massimo Tamburini’s finest design, the Bimota DB2 is the consumate combination of exotic componentry, exhilarating performance, exclusivity and style. Bimota made only 408 DB2’s, of which 285 had complete fairing.

This motorcycle was completely restored in 2001 when it had approximately 3000 miles and donated to the Larz Anderson Transportation Museum in Boston, who elected to auction it to focus on their older collection of pre-war cars. The odometer currently shows 1003 miles, the amount ridden after the resoration and replacement of the speedo and tach.

Enhancements performed in 2001:

944cc Big bore kit; Stainless steel engine studs; Carburetor jet kit; New timing belts; Carbon fibre belt covers; Braided brake lines; Polished wheels, mufflers, intake manifolds; New chain and sprocket; Adjustable brake and clutch levers; Tinted windscreen, Euro headlight; New speedometer and tachometer; Painted frame.

Since I purchased the bike in 2002, it has lived in a heated, air conditioned garage, and has been ridden less than 20 miles. After sitting so long, I decided to “re-commission” it in 2010 to make it roadworhty again. This involved new tires, new battery, new timing belts, rebuilding the carbs with new floats and jets, all new fluids, etc. It has not been ridden since.

This bike is absolutely stunning, and is virtually new. It deserves to escape from my garage, and be ridden!!

Period reviews suggest that this bike does exactly as intended, putting the flexible, evocative, mid-range strong motor from a bike already well-known for stability into a chassis even lighter, with improved suspension front and rear. Given the relatively simple underpinnings, these are phenomenally responsive bikes, clearly benefiting from Colin Chapman’s “simplify and then add lightness” ideology.

This is a bike for people with enough skill to appreciate the qualities this bike embodies: lightness over power, finesse over brute strength. Or just people with an eye for striking Italian design.

1993 Bimota DB2 L Side Rear

One of the nice things about bikes like this is that, unlike Suzuki’s GSX-R models, these appealed to well-heeled collectors from the start, and many have been painstakingly maintained. This example has seen very few miles roll under the wheels, but was recently brought back to road-worthy condition after a lengthy spell sitting in a museum: no hideous paint jobs to undo, no extended swingarm to replace, or crash damage.

It does feature a big-bore 944 kit [up from 904cc], which is great for power but reputedly can run a bit hot in traffic. The listing doesn’t mention if cooling has been improved, but it’s unlikely to be used for commuting, so I’d imagine this should be great for the back-road sorties this bike was made for.

-tad

1993 Bimota DB2 R Side Front

Simplify, and Then Add Lightness: 1993 Bimota DB2