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Maybe Be My Always – 2000 Bimota V-due 500C

Seeming to have made a silk purse from a nasty old two-stroke 500, Bimota had just about set the moto world on its ear when reality intervened.  This V-due has carburetors set up by a Bimota cognoscenti and proves that there really are unicorns among us.

2000 Bimota V-Due 500C for sale on eBay

With its two stroke v-twin, the V-due was able to match 105 hp with a dry weight of just under 400 lbs.   Electronic fuel injection ensured low emissions and 50-state compliance.  Sergio Robbiano designed a signature chassis, with alloy extrusions connected by Rimini’s exquisite billet machinings.  A large diameter Paoli fork set is fully adjustable, as is the horizontal Öhlins monoshock.  Swoopy and angular bodywork is executed in carbon fiber, with a single seat and dual expansion chambers.

This V-due looks immaculate and shows just 212 miles on its almost bespoke dash.  Due to poor running and more major issues, the first examples were recalled by the factory and many were converted to carburetors by a factory engineer.  Even then they required careful tuning, this time done by a North Carolina Bimota shop / museum.  Spare NOS fairings are seriously unobtanium.  Very little history to tell, but comments from the eBay auction:

Bimota V-due 500C. This was One of Bob Steinbugler’s bike from his collection Bob from Bimota Spirit I purchased this bike from him about 3 -4 years ago. Bike runs great this is the carburetor model which he serviced and tuned for me . The bike will come with a NOS set of spare fairings still in the wrapper. Upper fairing and left and right side fairing.

The conversion to carburetors indicated that more was amiss than just the fuel injection system, and the inconsistent power delivery was traced to under-engineered crankshaft seals ( each bay of a multi-cylinder two stroke has to be independently sealed to make induction vacuum ).  Unfortunately, at that point Bimota had run through their funding and had to shut the doors until new investors revived the company.  As individual as any Bimota is, the V-due might be their rarest and most exotic model.  And right here in our own back yard.

-donn

12 Comments

  • Sounds like future money, not current market pricing.

  • Why would you sell such a thing?
    My other question is how tragic if the real flaw in the bike as originally wheeled out on the showroom floor was poorly machined crankshaft seals – which cost pennies-thus bringing down the entire Bimota enterprise at the time.
    The tuppence worth of tar bringing down the ship, indeed.
    This bike would beg to ridden, and ridden properly, but but but if you and machine should make contact with the scenery in an unplanned fashion, where to get bits for repair?
    Spare fairings are a great bonus, but parts would always be a question in the back of the mind. So this is probably destined to be a polisher not a rider.
    Shame.

  • Who can forget the debacle when this thing debuted? Of course other small production outfits got the 500cc GP replica thing down.

  • …and I worry about parts for my RZ500!

  • Happy to see him riding it, I adore Bimota’s but boy oh boy are they problem children! Such cool bikes though.

  • I am astounded that this is a 2 stroke weighing 400lbs! Are the tires filled with water, or is there 100lbs of street bike bits on it so thatit can wear a license plate? My experience has been that 2-stone= light weight! A typical 4-stroke trackbike is about the same weight.

    And if this was a crankcase sealing issue that is now understood, why isn’t there a retrofit for profit enterprise popped up. Seems like it would be an investors delight. Especially if the fuel injection actually works because it wasn’t the source of the issues. I am not a historian and an insider on what the engineering issues were here. But i hate to see a redeemable sportbike (or entire model) go to waste. Would love to see a re-dux..

  • The problem was Bimotas fuel injection. In house designed by Bimota, it never functioned properly. Endless recalls to deal with the issue and no simple solution. Ultimately they developed the carburetor fueled Vdue Evoluzione, but by then the damage was done.

    I’m not aware of any crank seal issues, and that certainly wouldn’t bankrupt the company.

  • And $45,000 is ridiculous.

  • Over on race bike mart you can pick up an a pair of RS500’s for 110k British pounds. I bet the guy would sell one for 55k. Then you’d have a bike you can actually ride…!

  • Motoman,

    In what way are most Bimota problem children?

    Parts are easy to source, there is a vibrant owners group and generally very reliable.
    Most that complain about “issues” have yet to sit on one…

  • I’d have to do something about those exhaust stingers.

  • Two strokes and a Tony kart, this guy is as sick as I am. Saw one of these 500’s in person when I was in grade school and they still mezmerize me. It’s a shame the Monterey Karters did not get to renew this year, poor Tony😭

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