Every year, the most impressive representa-tives of the mobile past and future on both two and four wheels assemble at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este in Italy for a very special get together on the shores of Lake Como. Amid this extraor-
dinary blend of the traditional and the contempo-rary, BMW Motorrad once again presented a breathtaking concept study: the BMW Motorrad “Concept 101.”
The Concept 101 opens a new chapter in the history of BMW concept bikes. It is BMW Motorrad’s interpretation of endless highways and the dream of freedom and independence – the perfect embodiment of “American touring.”
The epitome of power and exclusivity
Concept 101 indicates the capacity of the concept bike that has its roots in the United States. The capacity of the six cylinders is 1,649 cc—approximately equivalent to 101 cubic inches, which is the American unit of measurement for cylinder capacity. So “Concept 101” moves into a sphere that goes beyond mere horsepower and acceleration figures – all that counts is the remarkable riding experience full of power and tranquility. The enormous torque of the in-line six-cylinder engine generates extraordinary pulling power in every situation on the road.
The number 101 also stands for the place where the vehicle came into being. It was not far from Highway 101, at the design studios of the BMW Group subsidiary Designworks in Newbury Park, California, that BMW Motorrad designers got together with their Designworks colleagues to create a truly special motorcycle that would extend the limits of quality and exclusivity and reflect a whole new touring philosophy: “We had a clear vision when we were designing the bike: under the motto ‘The Spirit of the Open Road’ we wanted to build a high-performance, emotional and highly exclusive six-cylinder vehicle that would make every ride a special experience. A bike that would make the moment so special, you would forget your destination,” said Ola Stenegard, head of Vehicle Design at BMW Motorrad.
Precision and emotion
The consistent flow of the lines from the front to the rear symbolizes the riding experience offered by Concept 101. Within the flowing silhouette, clear lines and elaborately modeled surfaces shape an athletic body. This creates a dynamic contrast between flowing movements and clearly defined lines that further emphasizes the bike’s character. The horizontal subdivision into two areas of color lends greater emphasis to the overall impression of flatness. While the lower section – the powerful mechanical unit – is dark, the upper area has been deliberately designed in lighter colors so as to reflect elegance and finesse.
The dynamically designed front trim in brushed aluminum is flatly integrated into the flow of the styling. The integrated headlamp with striking double circular appearance gives the front section a distinct and highly expressive look. It also provides the point of departure for the characteristic split face that runs across the entire bike through to the rear in the form of a brushed aluminum trim section.
Two striking side panels encase the front trim almost like a suit of armor, thereby creating a broad shoulder section that further highlights the power of Concept 101. Tailpipes on both sides, each with three outlets, visualize the number of cylinders and therefore the supreme performance and high torque of the engine. They also ensure the appropriate sound, making the potential of the six-cylinder engine audible. The rear view harmoniously rounds off the bike’s overall visual impression. A particular highlight is the unusual rear light cluster. It provides a frame for the dark-colored rear section in the form of two LED bands. The design of the lights is formally reminiscent of former road cruisers. At the same time the expressive appearance grants a fascinating technical and aesthetic style.
High performance, high tech, high value
The entire design of the “Concept 101” right through to the colors and materials used reflects power, contemporary flair and exclusive appeal. The sidetrim parts and cases feature an elaborate two-color finish: a light silver surrounds the surface while the inner section is somewhat darker silver with more of a metallic effect. The two areas are separated by a line marking applied by hand. The paint finish also includes a shadow effect that gives the manually applied line marking greater depth towards the inside.
The dynamic front trim adds a touch of cool, technical style with its unpainted, brushed aluminum. The aluminum’s modern, technological statement is supplemented in the bike’s lower section by means of generous carbon surfaces with a silky gloss. Amid silver paint surfaces, brushed aluminum and carbon, there are dark wood elements that add a warm, exclusive counterpoint. The elaborately milled wood, only treated with oil, emphasizes the horizontal gesture of the side sections with its discreet grain. The model designation is integrated in the wood surfaces as an elaborate aluminum insert and badge.
On the seat, two leather qualities further reflect the bike’s exclusive character: the fine-grain black leather of the side sections adds a touch of elegance to complement the perforated black leather of the seat area itself. A brown leather strip separates these two distinct sections.