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1966 Honda CM91 Roadster Kit

In Japan, Small Displacement by AbhiLeave a Comment

The base model of this bike is something most people are familiar with – the step through Honda Cub, what James May once called the greatest machine ever. But in the late 60s, Honda was worried that scooters were losing popularity. Their solution was the Roadster Kit, which would completely change the CM91.

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In Canada – 1989 Yamaha TDR250

In Dual-Sport, Japan by AbhiLeave a Comment

Yamaha called the TDR250 the “Ultimate Dual“. Thanks to a a dual-sport frame with a retuned two-stroke motor from a TZR250 sportbike, I call it weird. Whatever you call it, the US did not have anything like it, because Yamaha never officially sold it here. With that said, a few were sold in Canada, and that’s where this example is …

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1946 Nimbus Model C

In Vintage by AbhiLeave a Comment

The Nimbus motorcycle dates back to 1919, the result of a vacuum cleaner manufacturer that figured they could make some money by also building motorcycles. Though the two products may not share a lot conceptually, the original Nimbuses (Nimbi?) were quite technologically advanced with shaft drive, steel frames, and a telescopic front fork (a year before the BMW R12, though …

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Rare Project – 1972 Gilera Gina Macho

In Less than 5k, Standard by AbhiLeave a Comment

Gina is a combination of GIlera and ArgentiNA, as this bike was a partnership between “Italy’s finest design engineers and the genius of Argentina’s master craftsmen.” The company offered trail and road models in both 175cc and 250cc displacements – here’s a rare example of the 175cc road bike that will need some work before it can hit the road …

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The Widow Maker – Jet-Powered Trike

In 3 Wheels, America, Custom by AbhiLeave a Comment

In 1972, EJ Potter (also known as the Michigan Madman) showed off an incredible trike in Lakeland, Florida. Doing his best Dr. Strangelove impression, EJ basically straddled a Fairchild J-44 jet engine on wheels. It was a short lived experiment – the 1,200 hp rolling jet engine was claimed to have crested 200 mph before it crashed at 120 mph …

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Pantah Body Kit – 2011 Ducati Monster 796

In Italy, Sport by AbhiLeave a Comment

In 2010, Ducati announced an interesting program for Monster owners. The Italian firm released a series of body kits that could be installed very quickly (10 minutes) to change up the look of a Monster 696, 796, 1100, or 1100S. This featured 796 has the “Pantah” kit, which has a livery reminiscient of the classic 1981 Ducati Pantah 500SL.

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87 Miles – 1990 Honda NS50F

In Japan, Small Displacement by AbhiLeave a Comment

Just for 1990, America got a taste of Honda’s NSF50F two stroke “sport” bike. Despite the diminutive size, it’s a street legal bike with a claimed top speed of 55 miles per hour. It makes me think of a MB5 that got updated with liquid cooling and then painted by a Miami coke dealer. I want one.

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1980 Moto Morini 500 Strada

In Italy, Standard by AbhiLeave a Comment

Most riders think of the 3 1/2 when they hear Moto Morini, but the firm was also known for their 500 Sei-V that was produced a decade later…to very little fanfare. What was once a classically beautiful motorcycle became an odd jumble of plastic and angular lines as the Italian company tried to compete with bikes coming out of Japan.