If it’s motorbikes that dare to be different from an aesthetic point of view that you’re after then Death Machines of London are definitely the workshop for you and they’ve proven this point once again with their latest release – the gloriously stylish and contemporary looking Kenzo Motorcycle which will unquestionably turn heads everywhere you go if you’re lucky enough to get your hands on one.
The Death Machines of London Kenzo Motorcycle takes its design inspiration from a samurai general’s armour and is named after an iconic Isle of Man TT Racer from Japan by the name of Kenzo. This spectacular reimagining of a 1977 Honda Gold Wing Bike is a fantastic showcasing of traditional craft in combination with top of the range manufacturing practices and, as you might expect, this caused the workshop many problems along the way but, as you can see, it was definitely worth the blood, sweat and tears.
Ride or Die
Death Machines of London are aptly named as they are certainly not adverse to pushing the boundaries of what is possible with motorbikes and the Kenzo is an excellent example of exactly that. This superb looking steed is, without doubt, one of the most visually arresting that you’re ever likely to see and it is in good company with the other mesmerising rides from the Death Machines of London stable.
In 1570, Honda Tadakatsu made a name for himself as one of japan’s most celebrated samurai generals, beating an enemy who outnumbered him 50 to 1 without so much as a punch being thrown, just because they thought he was either insane, deadly, or both. Move on a few centuries to 1930, where Kenzo Tada spent forty days travelling to europe by rail and sea to participate in the Isle of Man TT where he would become the event’s first Japanese racer. Then, in 1977, the Honda Motor Company delivered another Gold Wing GL1000 from its production line and, all these factors combined, to lead to the breathtaking Kenzo Motorbike from Death Machines of London.
The machine was built in CAD, but although all the bucks and templates were made using the same data, trying to successfully combine so many manufacturing processes – the inherent asymmetry of handmade aluminium panelling, the slightly more symmetrical composites, with the high-precision 3D prints and CNC parts – presented many challenges for the workshop but we’re mighty glad they persevered because the end result is nothing short of extraordinary.
One of the stand out features of the Kenzo Motorcycle from Death Machines of London is the mirror-polished black ‘blade’ which envelopes the front light cluster and drops down to the base of each fork is a reference to a Katana sword. The body work was then finished off in their own custom Titanium Samurai paintwork, with matte black detailing that adds a stealthy touch to proceedings. Additional features include detailed ‘Kenzo’ grill work, an in-house petrol cap, precision-machined aluminium badges and handle bars wrapped in the traditional Tsukamaki sword wrapping technique.
The seat unit which is CNC’d from high-density foam and concealing a remote proximity sensor, was then wrapped in embossed leather reminiscent of the layered clothing worn under armour. The machine is brought to life by tapping Kenzo’s proximity key fob on the leather ‘V’ intersection of the seat. This initiates the electrical system, and ignition is achieved through a discreet starter button under the right handle bar.