Hammer and Cycle | Wild File
Crazy concepts from Russia
Written by: Motorcyclist Staff
February 1 2012 11:17 AM
By Aaron Frank | Photography by Solifague Designs
First things first: These are digital renderings, not in-the-metal motorcycles, so it’s tempting to dismiss them as daydreams. But even if Moscow-based designer Mikhail Smolyanov is only manipulating pixels, it’s impossible not to appreciate the sheer creativity and idiosyncratic imagination on display in these stunning concepts he created. Pulling inspiration from everywhere—art deco, steampunk, sci-fi—Smolyanov has created some of the most original motorcycle designs we’ve ever seen. And this is just a small sampling—find many more, including his equally outrageous automobile designs, at www.solifdesign.blogspot.com.
With apologies to Tom Wolfe, this kandy-kolored red-flaked streamline-baby looks like what Buck Rodgers might ride if he lived on a terrestrial planet and not in outer space. The art deco-inspired bodywork could have come from any 1950s American automobile; same for the steel wheels with half-moon hub caps. Who knows where what looks to be a supercharged opposed four-cylinder engine could be found? Perhaps a Soviet tank?
What would it look like if you grabbed one of the stripped-down racecars from the starting line of the first Indianapolis 500 in 1911, then sawed it in half to make a motorcycle? We’re guessing it would resemble this steampunk-inspired bob-job, which mixes modern running gear with yesteryear technology like a leaf-sprung seat, wooden subframe and antique headlamp.
This radical reverse-trike concept takes two forms more commonly associated with aging geezers—the three-wheeler and the chopper—and creates something undeniably aggressive and cool. A massive, air-cooled V-twin engine in a stiff, low-slung billet chassis is worlds away from the electronically neutered Dustbuster-on-wheels sold at your local dealership.