The appetite for retro styling isn’t exclusively the preserve of those with a passion for four-wheeled machinery – those who favour the rawer experience of riding a motorbike have also been bitten by the nostalgia bug and as a result ARES DESIGN has applied its engineering know-how to a BMW motorcycle. Many of ARES’s customers will have a ’bike in the garage and with the current fashion for retro-styled machinery ARES presents a BMW café racer.
The café racer motorcycle originated among British ’bikers in the 1960s where their steeds were stripped of unnecessary parts to create a minimalist racing style machine. Over 50 years later it’s a style that’s very much in vogue and many ’bikes from the period have been converted to café racer spec. To bring the genre right up to date ARES has based its café racer on the latest BMW R nineT which boasts all the latest safety systems such as ABS and traction control along with vivid performance from its 110PS 1170cc flat-twin.
Thanks to its minimalist styling the BMW R nineT is an ideal candidate for conversion and ARES has designed a new tank cover from carbon fibre which apes the design of the 1960s while the modern seat is replaced by a more traditional unit designed and clad in leather by ARES Design’s leather specialists. In keeping with the 1960s vibe the modern cylinder head covers are replaced by ARES’s freshly designed aluminium units that give the engine a retro look without compromising its modern performance.
The main mechanical change is to convert the R nineT’s central rear spring strut unit to a twin rear strut/damper set up which reflects the period style more closely, while the handlebars are replaced with a reprofiled low slung item which is again more in keeping with the café racer style. A new carbon fibre headlight cowling houses the modern headlight but fits the period better while the indicators and rear light have been replaced with smaller retro-styled LED units. Even the switches on the handlebars are replaced with retro-styled items.
The ARES BMW R nineT will be built in limited numbers and with scope for further personalisation for customers who appreciate retro styling for their motorcycle but demand turn-key reliability and all the latest safety equipment one expects from a BMW.