In July, 2021, Haas Moto Museum founder and curator Bobby Haas commissioned Kingston Custom’s Dirk Oehlerking to build him a custom BMW R100. While the American collector and German builder were continents apart, they shared the same design territory. After all, Haas already showcased three Kingston Custom builds at his Dallas, Texas-based museum.
Sadly, Haas passed away on September 28, 2021, due to a respiratory illness. Four days prior to Haas’ untimely passing, Oehlerking sent the entrepreneur a photo of the build’s progress. Haas marveled at the streamlined bodywork and elongated silhouette, two Kingston Custom hallmarks pushed to the Nth degree.
Gallery: Hommage: BMW R100
“I was frozen, shocked,” Oehlerking told Bike Exif, “I could not and would not believe it. Such a wonderful person is no longer with us? I sank into deep mourning.”
Oehlerking rightly grieved for a month before a call with Hass’ partner Stacey helped him summon the strength to finish the project—and he would need it. Not only did Oehlerking fashion the hand-formed bodywork from 2mm-thick aluminum sheeting, but he also fabricated two front-wheel covers to complete the seamless look. The Kingston Custom builder didn't forget about function either, with four accessible fairing sections easing maintenance.
The Hommage may draw from Art Deco and Streamline Moderne but it also borrows liberally from BMW’s design archives. The build’s headlight hides behind the trademark dual-kidney grill while a vintage BMW 700 car taillight adorns the rear. Of course, the R100 boxer’s outboard cylinders break the smooth silhouette but instantly identify the build as a Beemer.
To bring the Hommage home, Oehlerking added tasteful period-correct touches such as a set of racing handlebars, a vintage speedometer, a leather tank belt, and fishtail exhaust pipes. Even a chromed mirror from a Porsche 356 Speedster elevates the Hommage to museum-worthy status. That’s exactly where the build will spend most of its days, exactly where it belongs, at the Haas Moto Museum.