Top 10 café racers for motorbike enthusiasts

Motorbikes get the heart of almost every Automotive lover thumping – especially Café racers! Café racers started out as standard production bikes, which were in turn modified to be quicker and more agile! They’re usually characterized by lower-set handlebars that stoop downwards, rear-set footpegs, and fuel tanks that tend to be rather rectangular-ish. They’re powerful, fast, and menacing to look at as well. And we’ve been seeing a torrential and exciting downpour of café racers at Yanko Design. Each bike was innovative, bringing to us something we had never seen nor experienced before. From killer speed to dashing good looks, to impenetrable safety standards, every design we featured at YD broke some design barrier for us, and hopefully, they did the same for you as well. Hence, we’ve curated a collection of café racers that we feel were the best of the lot! From an edgy café racer with a sci-fi design to a Honda Motocompo XL bike – each of these drool-worthy bikes is mercilessly pushing the boundaries of the automotive industry!

1. The Brutal R NineT

The basic design inspiration for this concept comes courtesy of the BMW R 80 motorcycle by BMW Motorrad. In its time the bike was an acclaimed classic road machine, having an off-road dirt bike-like vibe to it. While the R 80 G/S had a very tall profile, this one by Fabian trims it down a little for a café racer-like character. The front section of the ride adapts a very futuristic profile with the zero-shaped LED lights while the rear bears an aggressive character exemplified by the tail light positioned in a way to give the impression of a burning jet engine when lit up.

2. The BMW Ki Concept

Salvatore Ville, a car designer at Tata Motors, takes his bikes seriously, probably why he embarked on modifying the design of a BMW K100 into an attractive café racer. Salvatore says he wanted to give the bike a sensual appeal by giving it sexy proportions. According to him, the BMW Ki Concept embodies the aesthetic heritage from the yesteryears, in a shape that’s not limited by the norms of the law. The bike is powered by an electric motor and manages to retain BMW’s DNA in totality.

3. Hondo Motocompo XL

So, what would a Motocompo on steroids and muscle be like? Shedding away its sweet character for a hotter version of itself – undeniable metamorphosis and rising like a phoenix from the ashes of time. This metaphoric vision is soulfully represented in the Honda Motocompo XL bike mustered up by 3D artist Allan Williams. It inherits the DNA of the original Motocompo scooter in more ways than not – the boxy shape being one. Just imagine it being an XL version of the compact scooter – loaded with the mean machine racing character, the Motocompo XL is a cafe racer right out of the pop culture handbook.

4. Sabino’s BMW café racer concept

This bike’s form is pretty linear on the top, with one single wave-shaped swooping line going from taillight to headlight; breaking just once for the dashboard visor. Its body-work is primarily a combination of metal and carbon fiber, which makes for some interesting paint jobs including one in Yellow, and another in Red which was lovingly dubbed as the Iron Man Edition on Instagram. The bike sports a BMW logo on its side, and in keeping with BMW’s tradition, opts for a split headlight instead of the iconic split kidney grille. The edge-lit taillight sits on the end of the seat too, which cantilevers off the bike’s main body, creating an absolutely enchanting side profile!

5. The CyberX

Straight from a Cyberpunk future, carrying a semblance of the neon colors that became a cult favorite with the Tron bikes – this ride is unlike anything on the roads yet. Those fat wheels contrasted with a slim profile, the tricked-out LED lighting, and laser printed, fully customizable side panels – all add up to make it a dazzling ride one would want to flaunt around. The two-seater configuration (in a bench-like leather saddle setup) of the electric bike is another highlighting feature, not most performance bikes can boast. The sharp LED headlight gives it a moped-like feel, while the color-changing body and the wheels give it enough road presence in the dark, so other motorists remain aware.

6. The Voisin

The Voisin motorcycle promises a supreme level of riding stability thanks to its dual rear wheels sliced by the swingarm, and the reinforced metal frame design strengthened by the dual suspension setup on the rear. While you could technically call it a trike (since it has three separate wheels) still it is a bike at its heart and soul, as the wheels are sandwiched close together. The leaning forward seating position gives the ride a very sporty appeal, and its front, as well as the rear, gives Voisin that futuristic appeal, perfect for a sci-fi flick.

7. Concept 13 R

The Concept 13 R’s f***boi vibe is deliberate and difficult to ignore. Look past its edgy, armor-like design and you’ll notice that tramp-stamp on its tires that reads “Love You, Fvck You”, sending mixed signals that make you even more curious about the bike. The modified concept ditches Yamaha’s iconic fuel-tank design for a low-poly fairing that is complemented by the unusual windshield plate on the front within which sits the bike’s tiny, yet powerful projector headlight. The Concept 13 R has two additional headlights too, in the form of LED strips mounted on the front spring forks. The taillight sits on the back of the seat, with the same thin LED-strip design.

8. The Fuell Flow

Designed to be the vanguard of urban mobility, the Fuell Flow is a fully electric motorbike available in both 11kW and 35kW variants. With a comfortable 125-mile range and a motor that sits on the rear wheel, eliminating the need for a transmission belt or chain, the Fuell Flow makes for a comfortable urban ride. It features a connected dashboard, 13 gallons of storage onboard for bags and whatnot, and is even customizable, allowing you to switch motors, batteries, and chargers. And what’s truly the best bit is that it combines the talent and expertise of Erik Buell, the founder of Buell Motorcycles, and Frédéric Vasseur, Formula 1 Alfa Romeo principal engineer.

9. e-Café Racer by OX

Ultra-sharp aesthetics of this two-wheeled hunk are in the perfect proportions to position it as a speedy café racer and a race track monster with the power to back its intimidating stance. The lightweight café racer e-moto will most likely get an 8-kW rear hub motor powered by dual removable batteries. It should hit a top speed of at least 110 km/h and go about 100 km on a single charge. By the look of things, the OX’s latest offering should get an upbeat digital instrument cluster perfectly juxtaposed with the classic-looking front section. This display is complemented by the secondary display on the handlebar which will be used for navigation aids, notifications from smartphones, or toggling music on media player.

10. The Neopilen

This bike is dominated by creased silhouettes on the side body panel and the front stance. Designer Onkar H says the inspiration for the vertical architecture design comes from the Sarolea motors’ high-performance electric motorcycles. The rear has a very revealing stance with the body frame fusing into the seat in a concave shape. Talking of the body panel, it reminds me of the Xbox Series X – not only because of the rectangular aesthetics but the presence of a fluorescent color (of the Xbox logo) and the cool blue ambiance near the tank.