Motus is one of the most interesting stories in the motorcycle industry right now. In a factory at the old Barber museum location in Birmingham, Alabama, Motus builds just two models: the MST and the up-spec’d MST-R, the only American-made sport-touring motorcycles on the market.
The bikes are powered by Motus’ own 1,650 cc ‘Baby Block’ engine, a 90° V4 that delivers massive torque. The MST range is now in its third model year, and with a growing number of fans, it was only a matter a time before an MST went under the grinder. And who better to do the job than Bryan Fuller, a man steeped in the ways of the American custom scene?
“We really wanted to tap into the style and hot rod culture that Bryan has become known for,” says Brian Case, the Motus design director. “We’re huge fans of Fuller’s vision and skills—so the project was a natural fit for Motus, with its American hot rod roots.”
The 2015-spec bike belongs to Californian moto enthusiast John Bennett, and arrived at the Fuller Moto workshop severely damaged. (Not from a riding accident, we’re happy to say, but from a transportation mishap.)
Rather than repair the MST-R to factory spec, John decided to turn his bike into a ‘naked streetfighter.’ And Motus quickly saw an opportunity—a chance to get stylistic inspiration, by observing how Bryan Fuller works. So Motus designer Brian Case worked alongside Fuller, providing technical guidance without restricting the creative process.
This is one seriously fast bike: with 180 bhp at the crank, the stock MST-R holds the world land speed record for a production pushrod-engined motorcycle, at 165.81 mph. That’s plenty fast for most folks, so Fuller has focused mostly on reducing weight and the aesthetics.
He’s installed a new lightweight exhaust system though—made from 1.75″ stainless steel and compact ARP 12-point fasteners. The collectors and mufflers are custom made with Cone Engineering parts.
A dyno run to check the tune of the engine confirmed a mighty 156 rear wheel horsepower. Wet weight has dropped from 565 pounds to 435, giving the Fuller Motus almost identical vital stats to Buell’s blazing fast EBR 1190RX superbike.
The ride height and spring rates have been decreased due to the reduction in weight. The stock forks are already exceptionally good—being Öhlins NIX30 adjustables—but they’ve been black anodized for visual impact. BST 17-inch carbon fiber wheels shod with Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsas help to keep the show on the road.
The heavy lifting from a custom point of view is at the back of this bike. The long subframe of the standard machine, designed to carry heavy panniers, is gone. In its place is a stubby new structure, crafted from .065 Chromoly tubing to match the trellis main frame.Read More...
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