Forkless cafe racers, supercharged streetfighters and kit superbikes: Bimota’s bizarre EICMA selection

Ultra-exotic Italian brand Bimota laid on a superb selection of eye-popping goodies at EICMA 2015 in Milan. For starters, this bizarre hub-steered cafe racer, a retro take on the ultra-futuristic Tesi range. Then there’s the Diavel-powered Impeto streetfighter with its optional supercharger, and finally the kit bike to end all kit bikes, a build-your-own Bimota BB3 superbike kit.

This Bimota TESI RC hub-steered cafe racer is a steampunk cosplayer's dream

Back in the 1970s, the story goes, motorcycles were fairly decent at going, but not so great at stopping or turning. Most of the wildly bearded motorcyclists of the day had no problem with this situation, being man’s men, but a select few Italians saw a business opportunity in taking the great engines of the day and putting them in chassis designs that would go around corners without bending themselves into pretzels.

Thus, Bimota was born. Its bikes still didn’t brake very well, but then, brakes only made you go slow, so that wasn’t a problem. Remember, performance motorcycling was really only for wild-eyed maniacs in the 70s anyway.

Nowadays, of course, you’d be hard pressed to find a production bike that doesn’t handle and brake very nicely indeed, opening the motorcycle world up to all sorts of genteel folk like you and I who have things like personal hygiene and regard for common law, allegedly.

Either way, Bimota is still around, still sticking with the policy of using the top engines from other manufacturers in increasingly exotic frame designs. And the Italian brand’s expo stand at EICMA 2015 is home to the wackiest production bike we’ve seen in a long time: the Tesi RC (race cafe).