Honda rolled out 10 breathtaking Rebel 1100 custom builds at the 2022 Wheels and Waves festival in Biarritz, France. Though the festival is known for its chill vibes and beachside scenery, the competition was hotter than ever.

World-renowned custom shops such as France’s FCR Original and Britain’s 5Four topped the billing but entries from Spain, Portugal, and Italy rounded out the stacked field. Following the fest, Honda implored fans to vote for the best custom Rebel of the bunch. After tallying the replies, Sardinia’s Motocicli Audaci ruled the roost.

Gallery: Maanboard: Honda Rebel 1100

Taking Biarritz’s coastline into account, Motocicli Audaci founder Nicola Manca transformed the parallel-twin-powered cruiser into a throwback beach racer. A high-mounted exhaust, springer fork, and streamlined tail cowl tread directly into sand-racing territory. Of course, Manca turned to 19-inch wire-spoke wheels wrapped in knobby tires to complete the aesthetic, but the build process was anything but smooth.

" We were inspired by the sand racers of the 1930s for numerous reasons,” explained Manca. “The first is the context in which the bike would be presented in our imagination. Wheels and Waves is everything that revolves around the bike and the sea, running at full throttle. So, it was inevitable to be inspired by the classic sand racers.

“The second reason is related to a technical problem encountered during the implementation. To get the line we wanted, we had to raise the rear of the bike and lower the front by about 16cm. As we wanted to use 19-inch wheels, a clearance issue arose as the front wheel would be touching the radiator. To avoid this, we installed a springer fork that made it possible to move the wheel forward, freeing up the space we needed, and at the same time lowering the front to get the line we had in mind."

In the end, all Manca’s hard work and ingenuity paid off. With the Wheels and Waves Rebel 1100 build-off victory now on his resume, we can’t wait to see what the Motocicli Audaci builder dreams up next.

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