I will be perfectly honest. I have no patience for history and so, this is going to be quick. I could give this a pass, but this custom motorcycle is too intriguing not to share. What you see here is a custom motorcycle. It is not just any custom motorcycle; it is a custom front-wheel drive motorcycle, inspired by an Art Deco bike dreamed up by some German engineers in the 1930s – apparently a 1935 Killinger und Freund, from what we heard.
Having a front-wheel drive motorcycle is not exactly the brightest idea because, physics say so, and having one in modern guise which can potential go at speeds, it is kind of suicidal. It is nevertheless intriguing and refreshing. We are going into the whole backstory of how this bike was conceived, nor are we going to dig into the technicalities. They are just too overwhelming. We are just here to admire a cool machine made by incredibly talented people.
Long story short, the bike was made by US-based Australian Craig Rodsmith of Rodsmith Motorcycles, a custom motorcycle shop in Texas, following a proposal by Bobby Haas of Haas Moto Museum in Dallas. Haas pitched the crazy idea after coming across an old photo of a front-wheel drive example online. Skepticism followed and then it was built. And the result is, as you can see, a ride which you can regard as an oddity at this day and age, but no less a beauty – just like the Art Deco bike that inspired it. Hell, I would say it looked even more dope than the original.
Rodsmith Motorcycles’ creation was aptly named The Killer, after the bike that inspired it. The Killer has three 60 cc 2-stroke motors, in radial configuration, on its 19-inch front wheel, and an interesting setup of sprocket and chain, that work in unison to provide the drive. Not necessary the most practical, but it was quite a technical feat. The fact that motor is on the front wheel, it allows the bike to be extremely slender. So slender and flowing that it almost like a vehicle straight out of a 60s sci-fi movie or comic. A la Rocketeer vibe, if you will.
Anywho… if it interest you, you can learn the details and see more detailed images of the build in this article on BIKEEXIF. You can also learn more about Rodsmith Motorcycles over at the shop’s Facebook and Instagram page.