After a 2 year hiatus, the Munich-based custom motorcycle powerhouse Diamond Atelier is back. Despite big changes in the company’s structure, Diamond Atelier’s directors are hell-bent on preserving the brand’s core values. As the name suggests, they liken their motorcycles to precious gemstones, luxurious and timeless and their past builds epitomise this approach.
To renter the scene with a suitably big bang, Diamond Atelier has unveiled their latest custom project, the ‘MK One’. Taking design inspiration from motorcycles from their past, the R100R Paralever-based BMW cafe racer is everything you’d expect from the premium workshop.
“Excitingly 2023 marks the 10th anniversary of Diamond Atelier, which coincides charmingly with the 100th anniversary of BMW Motorrad. The very first Diamond Atelier bike – the DA#1 – was based on a classic BMW R80RT airhead. What else could be more fitting than a salute to BMW ́s anniversary and a tribute to the icon in concept and design from that time ten years ago?” says Diamond Atelier creative director Paul Stalmann.
As hinted by the MK One name this build has also been influenced by one of the brand’s most iconic motorcycles, the Mark II Evo. The similarities between the MK One and the other 2 models are undeniable. However, to step things up a notch, the DA team added the very latest in premium components and upgrades to achieve a superior end result.
As Paul explains, “While the original DA#1 was based on a BMW R80RT Monolever, the MK One shares the same base as the Mark II Evo. A more modern and technically advanced BMW R100R Paralever. The Paralever swing arm and shaft drive in itself are a considerable improvement. This keeps the rear drive at a constant angle as the suspension moves and the torque of the wheel does not result in suspension movement.”
To further improve on BMW’s design the DA team has completely revised all aspects of the MK One’s handling. The revised suspension is a classic Diamond Atelier affair with a set of 43mm USD forks up front, sitting in a custom-made, CNC-machined top clamp. The rear uses a Wilbers 640 Night Line monoshock. Stopping power comes courtesy of twin Tokico 6-piston callipers on the front end and the rebuilt stock drum at the rear. Similar to DA#1 the hand controls use Brembo equipment and fluids are managed by stainless braided lines.
The MK One’s styling is straight out of the cafe racer handbook. From the bike’s paired-back appearance to its equipment and stance.
The MK One’s bodywork is on point with all of the original R100R equipment gone aside from the fuel tank which has been fitted with a flush mount filler and bespoke BMW roundels. Swept upward to create a more aggressive stance the cafe racer tail features a Diamond Atelier single seat and cowl setup on a svelte custom subframe. To leave the rear end impeccably clean the license plate resides under the tail, just in front of the rear wheel. To get the BMW sitting right it now rolls on matching 17-inch rims laced using a slick cross-spoke pattern. Wrapped in Metzeler’s Racetec K3 rubber it’s a performance-focused setup so the riding position has been tailored to suit with clip-on bars and rear set pegs.
For the bike’s accessories, Diamond Atelier has hand-picked a selection of some of the finest parts around. For the lighting, they’ve gone with a yellow-tinted JW-Speaker LED unit with adaptive side beam lighting which offers improved cornering vision. The headlight bucket sits in machined alloy brackets and is secured in place by Kellermann LED turn signals. As for rear-end lighting, 2 Kellermann Atto LED units secure the license plate to the bike and function as both the rear-end brake and turn signals.
Other electrical upgrades include a Motogadget Keyless ignition, Motoscope Pro speedometer and a Bluetooth enables M-Unit electrical controller.
In typical DA style, the team spared no effort in upgrading every aspect of the performance of this motorcycle including its engine. The 980cc boxer was torn down and treated to a tried and tested recipe of upgrades that optimise performance without sacrificing reliability. The rebuilt powerplant now features an increased capacity of 1070cc, ported heads, an F1-inspired cylinder coating treatment, new Minuki carbs, K&N filters, an improved cooling system and a custom-made exhaust system. A programmable high-performance alternator and ignition system make the most of the new equipment which resulted in a dyno-tested power figure of just over 90bhp.
“This bike is ready to hit the road using its maximum performance without the rider having to worry about the durability of the engine.” Stalmann proclaims.
“The colour scheme of the Mark One reflects the premium yet luxurious lifestyle a Diamond Atelier bike is associated with. The fuel tank and rear are painted in a unique shade of grey, while the stripes and wheel hubs are finished in BMW Sapphire Black which glitters in the sunlight.” It’s a striking-looking combination but the icing on the cake is a 0.17-carat diamond which is set in sterling silver and embedded in the top clamp. It’s extravagant and showy, but entirely appropriate for this first-rate custom.
This bike is now heading to Scotland where its owner is sure to appreciate the work that’s gone into it. As with previous Diamond Atelier builds this bike is also the first of a very limited MK One series. If you’re keen to own one, Diamond Atelier are taking orders now, but you’d better get in quick.