Faves: The Minimalist XS650 By Auto Fabrica

Minimalist XS650 Cafe Racer

The Type 6 By Auto Fabrica: Minimalist Beauty

The Japanese aesthetic design theory Kanso embodies simplicity within the Wabi-Sabi approach–not only to material, but life itself. The basic belief is that…

”Virtue and civility can be instilled through an appreciation of, and practice in, the arts. Hence, aesthetic ideals have an ethical connotation and pervades much of the Japanese culture.”

When you look at any bike built by England’s Auto Fabrica, you see Kanso and the Type 6 may be the most perfect example of the theory produced by the builder so far.

Anything that displays Kanso, takes something that has been in existence, then builds around it. The same holds true for the Type 6. According to Auto Fabrica’s owner Bujar Muharremi, the Type 6 is built around…

”One of four Yamaha XS650s we rescued from a farm in the depths of rural Cornwall. A lucky find that effectively kickstarted our company.”

With the Type 6, Auto Fabrica…

”Strived to achieve a bike which was executed perfectly and epitomizes what we see as a ‘real’ custom motorcycle—simplicity in form, complexity in detail.”

Essentially, they wanted to create a rolling example of Wabi-Sabi and Kenso. As you look at the bike, you can see they hit a home run!

The builders at Auto Fabrica plan their builds extensively. They start with a hand drawn sketch, move to Photo Shop, then they consider moving to the grinders and benders. With this build, the sketches and renderings screamed for extensive panel beating. Muharremi says,

”We spent a lot of time trying to balance clean graphics with highly complex and organic surfacing, to achieve a clean yet interesting design.”

Much of that balance is achieved by creating a tank/seat base that is a single unit, removing unnecessary line breaks, then lowering the existing frame headstock by two inches, creating a single line that sweeps from headlight to rear cowl.


The engine of the Yamaha XS650 was already a pretty cool looking unit, but Auto Fabrica turned it into a work of art. The idea was to create a symmetrical line of sight from the inlet to the exhaust tip. To do that, the engine was converted to a single carb, but the major design trick was creating the line. ‘

‘You can trick the eye by placing the single inlet on the opposite side to the exhaust outlet positions, to create an asymmetric balance.”

The engine was bored out to accommodate oversize pistons to add performance to beauty.

The matte finish of the bike was achieved in the blast cabinet. Auto Fabrica aqua-blasted the engine casings and every aluminum part possible. The exhaust pipes were key to the single line symmetric of the bike, so stainless steel was bent into perfect curves, then custom built baffles were hidden inside the exhaust tips. The front wheel is a 19 inch alloy, with an 18 inch in the rear. Both are spoked. The look is topped off by a set of impossibly sleek bars upfront. Looking at them, you want to scratch your head in wonder. Of course, many works of art leave observers with the same feeling.

More details here:  http://www.bikeexif.com/auto-fabrica

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