Germany is known for its close ties to the world of racing. Not only are some of the world’s most famous racing circuits housed in Germany, so too, are some of the best driving roads and highways known to man. One such road is the Automobil-Verkehrs- und Übungsstraße. Also known as AVUS, this now-public road in Berlin was built in 1921, and was used as a racing circuit up until 1998.
As a nod to the many years of racing history on AVUS, this custom BMW R18 was built by Workhorse Speedshop, and features a slew of bespoke parts designed to give the bike a thoroughly retro aesthetic, while retaining the beautiful design of the bike. Brice Hennebert is the mastermind behind Workhorse Speedshop. Based in Belgium, his work has received acclaim all across Europe, and sometimes all over the world. When it came to designing the BMW R18 AVUS, he clearly had simplicity in mind, as well as the intention of retaining the styling of the motorcycle.
Of course, to do justice to a custom build dedicated to a historic racing circuit, several performance-oriented mods just had to be done. As such, we find fancy custom-built suspension from Öhlins. The heavyweight cruiser now comes to a confident stop with custom brakes from Beringer, as well, and rolls on aftermarket retro-style wheels from Jonich Wheels. To give the bike a bespoke, retro-racer look, Workhorse Speedshop made use of different materials to achieve a custom, performance-oriented look. For starters, we find aluminum-milled fork supports, custom cylinder head covers, and custom engine cases.
At a glance, the R18 AVUS looks incredibly intimidating, thanks to its exposed engine. Surely, this bike is now a rocketship given how much weight it’s shed following the build. The stock R18’s long and bulky exhaust pipes have been swapped out for a sleek-looking underbelly exhaust with side exits. Furthermore, the bike’s thick saddle has been replaced by a skinny saddle wrapped in beautifully aged leather. The new seat also exposes the rear monoshock, further highlighting the bike’s retro-racer looks.
Last but not least, Workhorse Speedshop has found a way to keep things super minimalist yet functional in the cockpit: integrating a smartphone to serve as the bike’s instrument cluster. This means it also has built-in music and navigation functionality.