Bolt-On Kit Gives BMW’s R nineT A Fresh Look
Dab Design dresses up BMW’s modern Heritage range in sleek new bodywork
Piecing together a custom motorcycle is an arduous process. If one gets clever a bespoke bike can be produced on the cheap, but a genuinely transformative project typically necessitates large amounts of funding and an understanding of frame geometry, welding, body fabrication, wiring, suspension, etc. Simon Dabadie of Dab Design aims to change that with the introduction of the new ER—or “Enhanced Racer”—kit, fully revising the R nineT without changing any stock mechanical or structural elements.
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If the Dab Design name sounds familiar, there’s a good chance you may have seen photos of the “LM1”. That was the French outfit’s first micro-run of bespoke two-wheelers; a project that turned ten Honda NX650 Dominators into trick street trackers. After finding success with the Hondas back in 2016, Dabadie turned his attention to a more contemporary machine, BMW’s R nineT. The idea for the project was to visually transform the model without doing anything that would change its performance or reliability (or violate the warranty).
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Originally Dabadie tried to generate the funds producing the kits via an IndieGoGo campaign, but to no avail. Fortunately, photos of the kit started circulating online quite a bit which generated a lot of buzz, so now it looks like pre-orders aren’t far off. The indiegogo early-bird special was pricing the kit at 1,995 Euros which translates to around $2,450, though when you’re spending $15K on a new bike an extra two-and-a-half grand seems like small potatoes. Plus, when one considers the amount of time and money that would need to be invested to create a similar-looking bike, a sub-$2,500 price starts to look like a pretty sweet deal.
The ER kit consists of composite fiberglass bodywork—though according to the Dab Design website, you can also pre-order the kit in carbon fiber or flax fiber—which includes a front fairing, front “metal structure” (aka cowl/fairing), fork cover, radiator shrouds, rear side covers, front “lenticular” headlight (E4 certified) and supplementary “daylight” LED strip (also E4 certified), and tail-section with removable cover that can reportedly be replaced by a BMW passenger seat. Completing the package is a pair of CNC-machined “Dab Design” emblems that replace the stock Roundels on the R nineT’s tank.
MORE BOLT-ON KITS: Bunker Customs’ “Janus” kit transforms Yamaha’s MT-03 into a gorgeous customAccording to Dab Design, the kit fits any BMW R nineT model from 2014 on including the Pure and Racer specs, though the latter two do require a little bit of messing with the front fender. The website says all that’s needed to install the kit is a socket wrench and a screw driver (I've heard that one before -JM) . Because the kit does include a new headlight, there is a little bit of wiring involved. Thankfully, BMW engineered the R nineT to be extremely modular and easy to customize, so while I am garbage with electrical systems I’m more than confident that even I could easily install this myself in very little time.
Photos and video courtesy of Dab Design