Monday, August 20, 2012

Old Empire Motorcycles builds a custom Royal Enfield

This custom motorcycle is centerfold gorgeous.
Powered by a Royal Enfield motor, the sexy "Pup" is the product of Old Empire Motorcycles. Bloggers Jorge Pullin and Chris Bartlett both recommended I take a look at it. It is something to behold.

The Pup (named for the Sopwith Pup fighter plane of World War I) is more than just aesthetically pleasing. Somehow they seemed to have let the sex kitten out of the matronly Royal Enfield Electra on which it is based. It seems uncouth to stare but who can resist?

The Pup wears little "clothing" but every stitch is strategically placed. With tiny fenders and saddle, curvaceous tank and tucked in handlebars, it brazenly exposes its Royal Enfield motor.

Someone once said that an airplane that looks "right" will fly right. The original Sopwith Pub certainly looked right. Other O.E.M. products will be named for British warplanes of the past. They have plans for a Hurricane and Tempest.

You get the full magazine-spread effect in this shot.
All will share a dedication to doing things right. In fact, O.E.M. seems almost determined to do things the hard (expensive) way.

"Creating custom motorcycles that are well balanced, aesthetically pleasing and functional takes time, lots of time in fact and this is one of the biggest factors in why they tend to be on the expensive side," O.E.M. says of its products.

O.E.M. offers three types of builds: Origin (an original one-off design); Progeny (series production of up to 10 motorcycles of one model); and Genus (any of several styles on a donor motorcycle).

A pretty girl is like a melody.
Pup No. 2 is "well on the road to completion" according to a recent O.E.M. newsletter. Alec Sharp of O.E.M. described it to me:

"The Electra-X motor runs stock internals with custom exhaust and an Amal carb. Only major modification is the removal of the starter motor on the inner primary case, which requires plenty of fabrication work!

"Each Pup is one of only 10 to be built; we are (started) on our third build so far. Each one retails at £12,500 ($20,000) on the road. This is one of our higher end builds, which requires lots of work to achieve such a high quality finish and looking motorcycle.

"However it may be of interest to you that we are currently working on an EFI Royal Enfield to be turned into a stocky, wider wheeled bobber styled build, which is another of our one-off  'Origin' motorcycles and is destined to be something quite different.

"Also it may also interest you that we may have a build based around the classic iron barrel Bullet, which is the first of our 'Genus' builds, to be made in the style of the Pup but more affordable, with more of the original Enfield retained and in general less work and parts spent on it. If we do get the build then that particular build will be headed to the states and I intend to offer similar builds for hopefully around the £6,000 ($9,500) region on the road, possibly less, but we will have to see!"

Simple look is simply perfect.
You can keep updated through O.E.M.'s newsletter The HotWire.

O.E.M. has a notable commitment to "British Made."

"We are tired of ‘British’ companies talking the talk when it comes to a ‘British made’ product, but failing to walk the walk by having their products made exclusively abroad," the website asserts.

In a way it's not surprising that O.E.M. also offers "vintage" attire.

Their Pup is featured in this handsome video:

Old Empire Motorcycles - Getting the Shot from Old Empire Motorcycles on Vimeo.

1 comment:

  1. ..."they seemed to have let the sex kitten out of the matronly Royal Enfield..."
    Ha! Great way to put it, David.


Follow royalenfields on Twitter