“May the FUN be with you!”
Rémy Pagart of France’s MUTO Motorbikes has quickly become one of our favorite builders, a self-described “all-terrain artist” who brings a fresh boldness and joy to his work, operating with one of the great mottoes in the two-wheeled world: “May the FUN be with you!” In 2018, Rémy’s Yamaha XS650 “TRACTO” build was one of the more popular bikes we featured. However, Rémy wasn’t finished with the XS platform just yet:
“I was separated too soon from my previous creation, XS650 TRACTO, and had many more ideas in mind to create with this gorgeous Yamaha frame.”
Fortunately, he had another XS650 stashed away in a dusty corner of his workshop. This time, he again wanted to make the bike “look like a big toy,” but he didn’t want to directly copy his last XS — what would be the fun in that? This time, he found his centerpiece in the form of a reproduction 1970s Maico fuel tank. The square angles and raw, polished aluminum would define the rest of the build, including the handmade side panels, headlight, and frame loop. The bike is also running Harley Fat Boy solid wheels, Harley Sportster forks and brakes, and a gorgeous seat from his friend Frederic of Auto-siège.
Rémy has given this bike the same name as his workshop, “MUTO” — a combination of Moto, Mutuation, and Mytho. Below, we get the full story on this XS650 tracker with more stunning photos from Patrick Leveque of Lille, France.
Yamaha XS650 Fat Tracker: Builder Interview
• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop.
After working in architecture, design, decoration, art, sculpture…I wanted to be back in my workshop, creating, customizing motorbikes and make it art.
• What’s the make, model, and year of the bike?
Yamaha XS650 Special, 1980.
• Why was this bike built?
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
I was separated too soon from my previous creation, XS650 TRACTO, and had many more ideas in mind to create with this gorgeous Yamaha frame. Luckily I had saved in a dusty corner of my workshop. It was about time to bring it out and magnify it.
I had this idea to make it look like a big toy, like the previous one, but couldn’t copy it, where is the fun otherwise?
• What custom work was done to the bike?
It became clearer in my head, I could picture the tank: less long, less round. Every good motorcycle builder knows it, the tank plays a huge part in the look and feel of your creation. Not much reflection needed, I had my idea for the tank: I had in stock a replica of the famous tank from the 70’s Maico Cross, the one in polished aluminium.
This gem were going to be the centrepiece of my new creation. No way I would paint over this beauty of a tank so the bike would have a polished aluminium total look.
My friend Vince refurbished the aluminium engine and I’ve added Fat Boy aluminium wheels.
What’s next ? I just had to build side panels, a tiny mudguard and a headlight in the same metal.
To move away from my last creation, I literally removed the original frame hoop and created a new one, more singular, which would fit the tank’s square shape.
On top of that, I’ve installed a beautiful seat, designed myself and made from the hand of a master, my friend Frederic from Auto-siège.
For the rest, I used the same ingredients as on the TRACTO: forks and brakes from a Sportster, Motogadget for electricity and controls, Shock-factory for shock absorbers…and my guts and my heart.
• Does the bike have a nickname?
Why MUTO? Good question…Hum! It’s a mixture of motorcycle, mutation, mytho… So! Moto x Mutation : Mytho = MUTO 😉
• Can you tell us what it’s like to ride this bike?
It’s super cool. Because of this cocktail of parts, the ride of this bike is unique. After a few kilometers, you feel you’ve tamed the beast. It’s like a horse dressage 🙂
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
Of course! I made a unique bike.
Follow the Builder
- Web: muto-motorbikes.com
- Instagram: @mutomotorbikes
- Facebook: MUTO Motorbikes
- Photographer Credit: Patrick Leveque from Lille, France.