Based out of British Columbia, Motovida custom motorcycle garage specialises in turning out vintage-inspired motorcycles with a strong focus on practical rideabilty.
When it was released in 1999, the Kawasaki W650 quickly developed a reputation for being one of the best modern incarnations of a retro motorcycle – a genre that developed during the ’90s and hasn’t slowed down since.
Although a reincarnation of their own W series bikes from the 1960s, most people at first identify the similarities with Triumphs of the late ’60s. The modern retros combine classic styling and modern reliability in a package that is comfortable to ride just about anywhere.
Motovida took a stock 2000 model year Kawasaki W650 and rolled it into the garage. Although the bike had over 50,000kms on it, it was in good condition throughout. Mechanically, all that was needed was a deep clean and engine tune before the build began.
The fuel tank was taken down to bare metal, then hand sanded it to get the grain to follow the tank contour. It was then finished off with two ivory stripes and a satin clear coat by painter Todd Regier. The side and valve covers were powder-coated, and the fenders, tail light and signals were changed out for smaller, lighter fenders and a more compact set of blinkers and tail light.
The seat was trimmed down and flattened to reduce the upswept look of the original. It was then re-upholstered with a diamond stitch pattern as were the leather knee pads on either side of the fuel tank. To complete the bike a set of drag bars was added, along with shortened cables and rubber grips.
The finished build is a clean-looking bike that would look at home in the ’60s but still allows for long rides without worrying about a tool roll and spares.