BMW Lo Rider Concept at EICMAWed, 05 Nov 2008
BMW Motorrad has unveiled a bold new concept bike at the EICMA show in Milan which they call a study in design and engineering. Using the words purist and powerful to describe the concept, BMW has left nothing but the essentials present in a truly naked motorcycle.
One of the goals of this concept is to custom fit man and machine. Going well beyond chrome billet accessories, the Lo Rider will offer the rider a choice of most components other than engine and chassis. Each bike will offer a unique version of bespoke individuality. These options allow for a multitude of options which allow customers to build it into a pseudo cruiser or a naked Sportster. “Numerous options including different exhaust systems, seats, headlamp units and paint finish variations allow for a level of customization which is far greater than the familiar individualization by means of special equipment features and accessories,” says a BMW press release. “This means that the entire character of the vehicle can be adapted to the customer’s individual taste: the customer can take full pleasure in assembling a machine just as he wants it – from a cool cruiser to an aggressive muscle bike.”
Our European correspondent at the show, Yossef Schvetz, who greatly disliked the bike commented that, “The low weight, powerful flat-Twin engine and high-quality chassis technology give it a high level of sporty riding dynamics, while the lowered chassis and the relaxed yet active seating position with the broad handlebars are more of a loan from cruisers and naked bikes.” Essentially it looks like BMW is attempting to build a bike that offers something for everyone.
The response for the bike will likely decide whether the project gets scrapped or manages to once again see the light of day. Such an aggressive bike will undoubtedly elicit powerful visceral responses one way or another. The Lo Rider, which represents a significant paradigm shift for BMW, would create an entirely new market while restoring the passion and excitement that has been missing from BMW street bikes over the last few years. I say build it!
By Dustin Woods
See also: EICMA 2008: First Impressions, OEMs Plug into Electric Bikes, BMW Standardizes Switches.