An RC30-inspired “Retro Racer” built in collaboration with Öhlins Korea…
Known as the Fireblade in some markets, the Honda CBR1000RR was introduced in 2004 as the 7th generation RR superbike. Developed in conjunction with Honda’s MotoGP team, it incorporated such features as Unit Pro-Link rear suspension, a lengthened swingarm, and Dual Stage Fuel Injection System (DSFI). In 2008, Honda unveiled the 9th generation redesign, utilizing an all-new 999cc engine that boasted titanium valves, lighter pistons, and a maximum power output of 154 bhp. Meanwhile, the bike received a slipper clutch, electronic steering damper, and lighter weight chassis that centralized mass — a true weapon for the street and track.
Enter Chi-hyun Kim, the founder of Korea’s Crazy Garage. While most workshops concentrate on building bikes for normal city streets and highway cruising, Kim has an affinity for track-focused customs:
“The concept of the shop is mainly that of making bikes that can be enjoyed on the race circuit or winding roads.”
This is more than just lip service. Crazy Garage’s Sportster street tracker was built for amateur road racing at Korea International Circuit (KIC), and their BMW S1000RR Retro Racer gets more time on the track than the street. Now they’ve unveiled this 2008 Honda CBR1000RR, built in collaboration with Öhlins Korea.
Like many road racing aficionados, Kim harbors a deep crush on the legendary RC30 (VFR750R) — a bike that now fetches $40-60,000 at auction. So he decided to build a modern, high-performance tribute based on the CBR1000RR:
“I wanted to make a high-performance modern bike with an RC30 look.”
The result is the “Honda Tricolor,” which is running a full suite of handmade and high-performance parts. Öhlins Korea supplied their FGRT front fork and a TTX GP rear shock, and one of their managers, Min-ho Park, a former champion of Korea’s 600cc class, served as the test rider for the build.
It’s a testament to Kim’s vision and execution that the bike could please not only a professional racer, but the judges at Korea’s Ride Hard Custom Bike show, where it won one of the most coveted prizes. Below, we get the full story on this Retro Racer.
Honda CBR1000RR Retro Racer: Builder Interview
• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop, Crazy Garage.
I am Chi-hyun Kim, who runs Crazy Garage in Korea. The concept of the shop is mainly that of making bikes that can be enjoyed on the race circuit or winding roads. But we also make choppers and simple scramblers…
I really enjoy riding on the circuit with custom bikes… I do not customize only specific genres. I make engine rebuilds, custom parts, etc. and carry out overall work on the bike.
• What’s the make, model, and year of the bike?
2008 Honda CBR1000RR.
• Why was this bike built?
It is a Retro Racer series project. The BMW S1000RR Retro Racer was first released.
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
I like the Honda RC30 (VFR750). But it is not easy to get here. And there are costs and many difficulties to enjoy the track with it. So I wanted to make a high-performance modern bike into a RC30 look.
• Does the bike have a nickname?
• What custom work was done to the bike?
The bike was conducted in collaboration with Öhlins Korea.
I modified the universal-purpose frp fairing to make an appearance. I modified the subframe and made original handmade silencers and brackets. In addition to processing the intakes, the powercommander PCV, Ignition Module, and Autotune were installed to set the optimum fuel efficiency. I also installed quick shifter, Brembo master cylinder, quick throttle, adjustable handlebars and gear indicators for improved riding efficiency.
And Öhlins Korea offered me an FGRT front fork and a TTX GP rear shock in rental format. And we did the track test together. The test ride was done by Min-ho Park, a former champion of Korea’s 600cc class. He is currently a manager at Öhlins Korea and was very satisfied with the bike.
I wanted a nice exterior and kept trimming it so it wasn’t uncomfortable on real track riding. I finished with professional painting and various carbon parts.
• How would you classify this bike?
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
I entered and won a prize for the Ride Hard Custom Bike show in Korea.