The BMW R45 was introduced in the late 70s, largely aimed at learners and beginners. It looked much like a scaled-down version of BMW Motorrad’s larger bikes, with a 473cc, 35-horsepower boxer motor and 95 mph top speed. Though not particularly sexy in stock form, the R45 is light and punchy compared to the bigger airheads, and Mark Holyoake has called the R45 a “small but perfectly formed flat-twin.”
You also don’t see very many custom builds using this platform, so we were excited to find this 1981 BMW R45 brat bike build, nicknamed “Vulpini”, from Tiago and Luis of Unik Edition Custom Motorcycles of Portugal. Bike-building is still a hobby for these two friends, but they take the work very seriously, and their other BMW R45, “Roca”, was featured on Bike EXIF last year.
They have big ambitions of going pro. If they keep building bikes of this quality, it shouldn’t be long before their build queue fills up! Below, we get the full story on the build.
BMW R45 Brat Tracker: In the Builder’s Words
(Words by Unik Edition. Highlights by us.)
Unik Edition Custom Motorcycles represents the vision and soul of Tiago and Luis, but in each motorcycle we can give some artists the opportunity to express their art. We believe Unik Edition is, and will be much more than custom motorcycles. UN ED is part of a culture, a way of life.
The history of this motorcycle begins when our customer Martin came to us with the same goal as us. He did not want another BMW, he wanted something “unik,” and for that he trusted on us. He simply said that he liked cafe racer style, but would have to take two seats, would have to maintain a BMW vintage look, and the number 27 on side plate.
We talked to our partner designer (Rodolfo from Vintage is Cool), we gave the guidelines — probably a bratstyle — and a beautiful render was made.
During the build, we felt that to create something truly Unik, we would have to change the rear, principally the exhaust that turned out to be fantastic. Exhaust made with our partner Ivo from TIG Power.
In addition to the exhaust this motorcycle has all the new sub-frame, lithium battery in a box under the transmission, ignition switch replaced under the tank, mostly everything is new and custom, and many other details.
In addition to the custom bike, the English brand of helmets Hedon made a partnership with Unik Edition, so we had the opportunity to create a Unik Hedon helmet.
We want to thank Hedon for believing in the project, and the artist Johnny Ink for the excellent paint job on the tank and helmet. We want to thank the photographer Pedro Messias for the perfect pics.
The best is yet to come!
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