At the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, held in Cernobbio, Italy, on the picturesque shores of Lake Como, BMW Motorrad marked the 80th anniversary of its R 5, an iconic model with a lightweight frame based on the company’s 500cc factory race bike, by unveiling a one-off concept called the BMW R 5 Hommage.
The heart of the R 5 Hommage is a true piece of history—an original 500cc boxer twin that was damaged in a race. Brothers Ronny and Benny Noren, who have been building custom bikes for more than 30 years, made everything else from scratch. Using sketches by the BMW Motorrad Design Team, the brothers handcrafted everything from the billet aluminum valve covers and engine breastplate to the frame, fuel tank and rear fender. A defining feature of the original R 5 was its telescopic fork with aerodynamically shaped covers. On the R 5 Hommage, the leading edge of the fork cover echoes the “crease” on the breastplate and valve covers. And the custom brake and clutch levers combine the look of historical reversed levers with modern adjustability.
The technical highlight is the specially developed supercharger, which boosts the output of the original 500cc engine unit from 26 horsepower to a more contemporary level. A custom stainless steel exhaust system delivers the appropriate sound. Other modern touches include the new rear wheel suspension, disc brakes and bespoke front and rear wheel hubs. And no custom bike is complete without a special paint job and a hand-stitched leather seat.