Honda Cafe Racers

Honda is currently the largest motorcycle manufacturer in Japan. In the 1960s they became a household name in the USA thanks to their "You meet the nicest people on a Honda" advertising campaign. By the 1980s, they produced upwards of 3 million bikes a year. The Honda CB750 has been credited with being the world's first superbike and has become the poster child of the modern cafe racer scene.
Return of the Cafe Racers - Sam Troy’s Trophy – Honda GB400 TT Cafe Racer

Sam Troy’s Trophy – Honda GB400 TT Cafe Racer

In recent years we’ve seen a spate of new motorcycles inspired by classic bikes. Models like the Kawasaki Z900RS and the Triumph Thruxton R were released with convincing backstories explaining why they were made and what influenced their creation. It’s a clever marketing tactic used to coax us into believing these bikes…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Brotherly Build – Fabbris Moto Honda CB750

Brotherly Build – Fabbris Moto Honda CB750

Michele and his brother Marco launched their workshop, Fabbris Moto, in 2007. The pair share a passion for both race bikes and classic motorcycles. This, of course, means the brothers have a penchant for building cafe racers and their latest project follows suit. Based on a ’92 Honda CB750 the UJM has…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Reversa – Imbarcadero 14 Venice CB1000R

Reversa – Imbarcadero 14 Venice CB1000R

Despite Honda’s categorisation, we think the CB1000R Neo-Sports Cafe is anything but standard. With 143bhp on tap and radical neo-retro styling, it’s a machine that is worthy of a lot more attention than it’s been given. Since the CB1000Rs release, very few have been modified by professional builders. So far we’ve seen…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - The Sfida – Officine Uragani Custom CX500

The Sfida – Officine Uragani Custom CX500

Huge events like Verona’s Motobike Expo offer custom builders the opportunity to try something different. After all, how else are they going to stand out amongst the hundreds of other vendors and workshops displaying their wares? Attending the Verona show is an experience I’ve yet to have thanks to a 25-hour flight…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Same But Different – Thirteen & Co. CB750F

Same But Different – Thirteen & Co. CB750F

Mark Twain once postulated, “There is no such thing as a new idea“. This can definitely be said of the goings-on in the world of custom motorcycles. Ideas are reused and repurposed time and time again. So where the real talent lies is in creating something that either appears unique or is…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Mata Hari – Honda XL500 Flat Tracker

Mata Hari – Honda XL500 Flat Tracker

Flat Track racing is nothing new. In fact, variations of the sport have been around since the 1920s. Typically a Flat Track race takes place on a 1/4 mile or 1-mile oval dirt track. It’s fast, loud and delivers plenty of thrilling sideways action. In more recent years, thanks to the efforts…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Skilling Up – Steven Wilson Honda CB750

Skilling Up – Steven Wilson Honda CB750

Three years ago I featured a very special build built by Steven Wilson of BC, Canada. The bike, a CB750 cafe racer named Pedro, was built in honor of a lost friend and fellow motorcyclist. Today Steven is back with another impeccable cafe racer. For this project, he’s returned to the Honda…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Death Machines of London – Honda Goldwing

Death Machines of London – Honda Goldwing

The Death Machines of London (aka DMOL) never do things by halves. Their workshop has produced some of the most unique custom motorcycles in the world since it launched in 2016. Founded by designer James Hilton and engineer Ray Petty their portfolio of work would look right at home in the halls…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Quintessential UJM – AdHoc Cafe Racers CB750

Quintessential UJM – AdHoc Cafe Racers CB750

The Honda CB750 is often referred to as the original Universal Japanese Motorcycle. This is shortened to UJM, as most motorcycle enthusiasts like you, dear reader, are probably aware. First released in 1969 the CB750 was touted as the most sophisticated motorcycle ever, with its front disc brake and 190+km/h top speed.…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Wiese Crack – ’76 CB550 Cafe racer

Wiese Crack – ’76 CB550 Cafe racer

Remember the first time you swung a leg over a bike? Mathias Wiese does. At the tender age of eight, his dad dinked him around town on the family CB550. There was something about that afternoon’s ride that stuck with him. That feeling, that smell, and that inline-four snarl gave the young…

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Return of the Cafe Racers - Hellion Honda – Origin8or CB750 Brat

Hellion Honda – Origin8or CB750 Brat

The decision whether to customize a pre-eighties Honda CB750 or not is becoming a tough one to make. There was a time when these older CB750s were hot favorites with backyard builders and custom motorcycle workshops. The bikes sold in huge numbers between ’69 and ’78 so there were plenty of affordable…

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