Mass production has taken over almost every aspect of the motorcycle world including cafe racers. Hell, even bobbers are being produced from the factory floor now. But that hasn’t stopped the fine gents from Diamond Atelier from coming up with their own production line, one that is much more exclusive than any major manufacturer.
Munich-based Diamond Atelier is headed up by Tom Konecny and Pablo Steigleder, two men that know their way around an air-head BMW. Most of their customs are radical by nature, resulting in extended production times that can make the process of getting your custom bike a little arduous. Realizing this pitfall, Diamond has decided they want to bridge the gap between store bought and custom built. To do so they have introduced their exclusive Mark II series.
The Mark II series motorcycles will be ground up builds, perfectly capturing the essence of the cafe racer motorcycle, with a twist. While they will not be entirely unique, Diamond has introduced a ‘series’ that shares key components like frame, bodywork, and even suspension. This allows for each Mark II to be completed in a much faster manner than your typical ground up build.
The Mark II is based off a BMW R-series Air-head, featuring the Monolever frame and single-sided swingarm. With the baseline bike established, Diamond went through and painstakingly designed prototypes of each part. Creating the platform that would become their production series each piece is designed and over-engineered to meet Germany’s uber-strict TÜV standard as well as carrying their own patents.
The Tank is a gorgeous piece that shares lines with a typical toaster tank. The tail section is fabulously built, seemingly floating off the back of the bike. While it looks great it is also structurally sound, supporting the rider’s weight and even passing local state regulations. While Diamond has made it easier to build, they didn’t skimp on the options, offering several variations to the bike. One of which is being able to run a solo seat with suede or leather, or a bench two-up style seat. Everyone loves being able to pick their options.
What drives the Mark II is an iconic Air-head boxer twin from BMW. While the sizes vary depending on customers and demand, the theory stays the same. If it needs even the slightest improvement they go through the entire bike, engine not excluded. The transmission and final drive are also overhauled, making sure everything is up to spec. Even the carbs are gone through and matched to the exhaust and air filter setup the new owner decides on. Last but not least, the owner also gets to pick what color they would like the bike to be finished in, a choice that should not be taken lightly.
Giving the customer more options seems to be the newest of trends, but it’s still unheard of for a small time customs shop like Diamond to pull off. But man are they pulling it off. Not only are the bikes stunning, but they are also just the right amount of customizable. Once you’ve picked the tail section configuration and little things like exhaust and intake, it becomes time to look into what major changes you could have. Wheel size is possibly one of the biggest factors to consider, given that even a 1-inch difference can change the handling of the bike tremendously. To cope with the different wheel sizes, Diamond has configured the new Mark II with 53mm inverted forks and a fully adjustable Wilbers shock at the rear. This gives the Mark II a much-needed improvement in the handling department regardless of whether you are running 17-inch or 18-inch spoke laced wheels.
The triple trees are custom fabbed with a built-in digital tachometer and a stamped Mark II to remind you what your riding. An analog speedometer resides low in the frame just in front of your right foot. A lovely feature that keeps you in check when you decide the ride needs to get spirited. The engine is also extremely clean and well presented, featuring custom side covers with a diamond stamped next to the BMW logo. Overall a great presentation of ultra clean cafe racer style.
All in all the concept sounded extremely suspicious when I first heard it, but after seeing the end result I am totally sold. It’s refreshing to see the same bike changed with subtle tweaks, giving each and every Mark II a unique flare on an already impressive base platform. These are arguable some of the best looking production bikes on the market today.