March 24, 2009

1932 BMW R7

I might just be the only one that missed this bike when it first surfaced. My friend Lauren sent it over to me and, well, fell in love. It screams 30's deco. Too bad Hitler had to come and screw it all up. BMW had to focus on their airplane engines instead of ground-breaking design. Story goes that engineers got this old hunk of junk out of a box where it's been since before the war, and restored it to its "former glory". Thank God for engineers, huh?

Check out more photos below this pic, and some more info from the BMW website...

"The 1930s was a time of engagement with the fabulous and expressive world of Art
Deco. The integrated design of the R 7, with its extravagantly valanced mudguards, clean flowing lines and extensive use of chrome and steel, perfectly encapsulated this era. It was a motorcycle like no other that had preceded it or, in many ways, has been produced since. Motorcycles had developed from the humble bicycle and that is what, at that time, they still very much resembled.

"For unfathomable reasons, that was the fate of the R 7 until June 2005, when the box was opened. Inside, the R 7 was 70 per cent complete, but its condition was not good. Many parts had been severely damaged by rust and a ruptured battery had also caused some serious corrosion problems. This would be a long-term and expensive exercise, but BMW Mobile Tradition (now BMW Classic) was in a position to give the go-ahead for the restoration."

"With parts found, parts re-built and coats of lustrous black paint (of course with the signature BMW pin-stripes applied) it all came together late last year when the R 7 was finally returned to its former glory. There was still a bit to do however. The minor but important cosmetic trim needed to be added and final checks made. It was an expensive exercise, but a real labour of love by the expert team. The bike was checked, tuned and made ready. For the first time in over 70 years the R 7 was kicked into life and sent out on to the road with Hans Keckeisen behind the 'bars. The bike performed flawlessly and gave Hans a glimpse of just what BMW Motorrad had in mind toward the end of the 1930s."