Sometimes you come across a custom-built motorcycle that stops you in your tracks. This is one such custom. It’s a thing of beauty, to be sure, and functional, and pretty fantastic with its lighting and lines and knobby tires. What the heck did it look like when it was stock, though?
This one is a serious puzzler, mostly because when it was new it was wearing a lot more plastic. The parallel twin engine could be anything, really. The configuration isn’t an unusual one. Identifying characteristics have been stripped off the bike: the fuel tank, the crank case, and stator covers. Nothing is branded, nothing is obvious.
What is obvious are the twin-tube main frame, subframe, and swingarm that have all been painted white. Usually hidden, these design elements shine when they’re put on full display like this.
This piece of art hails from the Taverne Motorcycle Garage, a one-man shop located in Chateauneuf-les-Martigues, in the south of France, just outside Marseille. They have expertly converted what you and I might not give a second look in its stock form, into this stunner of a street tracker. In the photos, you might think the dark paint is black, but it is in fact a heavily-sparkled deep forest green, and that paint has been applied to the wheels too. I’m guessing that this bike sparkles like a carnival ride in the sun.
Have you identified the donor motorcycle yet? The engine, apart from some cosmetic changes, has been left unaltered. The bike kept its stock rear suspension and wheels, but the forks were yanked off a Triumph Daytona 955i. The tank is original but repainted.
Loads of touches on the build are one-off, true custom parts created just for this machine, like the tail section that replaces the original rear subframe and houses all the bike’s electrical bits. The leather seat and tank bra are unique to this bike. The custom front headlight housing, reminiscent of a scrambler’s number plate, also holds the very subtle LED turn signals.
The color scheme–that deep sparkly forest combined with white and a pop of neon green–should give you a clue about the bike’s origin. You got it in one, it started life in the Kawasaki factory! Would you believe it was once a 2012 ER6n? That’s right! The previous generation, staid, reliable, but unremarkable Ninja 650: a garden-variety, lightly-faired standard commuter bike. Turns out it can, in the right hands, become this funky standout.
Picture credit Taverne Motorcycle Garage