For Sale: Marcus Moto’s Design’s CRF Tracker”…
The Honda CRF450R is Big Red’s production motocross weapon, a four-stroke liquid-cooled racer born in 2002 and now in its sixth generation. The first redesign, in 2005, featured a new twin-spar aluminum chassis praised for its slimness, light weight, and handling — and the bike quickly gained supremacy in the 450 class:
“Most die-hard fans acknowledge that the Honda CRF450R is the force in the motocross galaxy. It doesn’t matter whether you see Honda as Sith or Jedi in the struggle for moto supremacy, the CRF450R is the light saber of choice.” —Dirt Rider
Enter our new friend Marcus Carlsson of Sweden’s Marcus Moto Design. By day, Marcus works in mechanical product design, most recently as Head of Mechanics for one of our favorite companies, CAKE — designers and manufacturers of some of the world’s most innovative off-road motorcycles and commuters, including the anti-poaching motorcycles we featured last year.
On the side, Marcus loves to design and build “weird race-inspired motorcycles” out of his small one-car garage, which might serve as an inspiration to some:
“You can make a lot more than you think with minimal tools. No need for a fancy full equipped workshop to make cool bike builds. I have very little space as there are two work benches and at least three bikes in there at once. You need to almost climb over one bike to work on another.”
Possibly his best-known build is the “CRF Tracker” you see here, built from a 2006 CRF450R with a clear vision in mind:
“The CRF Tracker was built with the vision to make the most minimalistic Street Tracker possible!”
Marcus wanted to take the minimalism to the extreme, and has done so with carbon fiber bodywork and gas tank, custom aluminum subframe, CAD-designed and 3D-printed side covers and headlight surround, and much more.
It’s an extreme aesthetic, sure to turn heads wherever it goes, and after some new revisions, Marcus has decided to let it go to a new owner:
“Recently the bike has received perfected paint work and brake light, turn signals, and larger battery on the swingarm bridge to support the lights for longer rides on the streets somewhere in the world for its new owner, as it is for sale! Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.”
The CRF Tracker is one of the higher profile builds of recent years, and the riding experience is one of a kind:
“It is so light and powerful, and looking down makes you feel like you sit directly on top of the engine!”
Below, we talk to Marcus for the full details on this uber-minimalist street tracker.
CRF Tracker: Builder Interview
• Please tell us a bit about yourself, your history with motorcycles, and your workshop.
I’m Marcus Carlsson from Stockholm, Sweden — a family father who loves designing and building a bit weird race-inspired motorcycles. I have always had a day time job so designing and building custom bikes have been just a huge hobby. I work in mechanical product design with everything from mobile phones to, lately, the start-up CAKE, where I am Head of Mechanics. We design and manufacture electric off-road motorcycles and commuter mopeds.
I have been rebuilding and redesigning bikes since my first TZR125, which got a unique solo seat. The most well-known bikes so far are the Husqvarna V1000 Gran Turismo concept bike (TL1000s based bike designed to be what COULD have been IF Husqvarna made street bikes again. It was designed and built back in 2007, way before Husqvarna hit the streets again.) Then we have the F1 Tracker, a street tracker based on a Ducati 996. Heavily inspired by Niki Lauda’s F1 Ferrari mixed with 80s MX style. And the latest big build in the media is the CRF Tracker. The latest build is the FC250 Baja Scrambler.
My workshop is a small one car garage. It doesn’t have that many tools or equipment. You can make a lot more than you think with minimal tools. No need for a fancy full equipped workshop to make cool bike builds. I have very little space as there are two work benches and at least three bikes in there at once. You need to almost climb over one bike to work on another. Would love to have more space and tools but it works pretty well like this too.
• What’s the make, model, and year of the donor bike?
Honda CRF450R 2006 motocross bike. Bought from a childhood friend back in our countryside home town. Ridden as a gravel road fun bike a few years until I turned it into the CRF Tracker.
• Why was this bike built?
It was built for my personal joy.
• What was the design concept and what influenced the build?
The CRF Tracker was built with the vision to make the most minimalistic Street Tracker possible! The idea was that it should be regarded as only frame, engine, and fat wheels. Nothing else. Engine visible straight down for the rider. Invisible gas tank. No padded seat. Minimalistic Extreme.
• What custom work was done to the bike?
Bodywork and gas tank in carbon fibre. Aluminium subframe underneath. All small covers made in CAD and then 3D printed. Supported with sheet-metal brackets. LED headlight ring with CAD-designed base that was 3D printed and painted. Super small battery for the headlight hidden in the lower triple clamp.
Rear light on the side with Japanese license plate from a Tokyo trip many years ago. The main effort was to make it as minimalistic as possible and hide everything to create the extreme look it now has. Recently the bike has received perfected paint work and brake light, turn signals and larger battery on the swingarm bridge to support the lights for longer rides on the streets somewhere in the world for its new owner, as it is for sale! Contact email@example.com for details.
• Does the bike have a nickname?
• Any idea of horsepower, weight, and/or performance numbers?
450cc torquey Honda 4-stroke thumper that spits fire through the FMF underslung custom exhaust and muffler. Weight below 95kg.
• Can you tell us what it’s like to ride this bike?
Awesome! It is so light and powerful, and looking down makes you feel like you sit directly on top of the engine!
• Was there anything done during this build that you are particularly proud of?
The final look was so close to the vision at the start is what I am most proud of.