Bimota: Proof that Italians can prioritize. Even if it is only 'First the passion, then the pasta'. Bimota is one such brand that every student at Nijenrode Business University gets flakes from between their fingers. Bimota made the most fantastic engines and staggered from one financial crisis to another. Nice is not it?
A business-like triple jump
Bimota was / is - that can change almost every week at the brand - a small Italian manufacturer of sporty, exotic specials based on purchased engine blocks. The company was founded in Rimini, Italy in 1973 by Valerio Bianchi, Giuseppe Morri and Massimo Tamburini. The company name is unimaginatively derived from the first two letters of each of the three founders' surnames, Bianchi Morri Tamburini. A trend that we also saw in the seventies in the smaller type of motor yachts whose parents Jan and Dinie plus the kids Dirk, Annie provided unique names such as 'Jadida'. We expected more from Italians.
The idea was good
But the idea behind Bimota was very good: the Japanese made fantastic, powerful and reliable engines. However, when they really drove on the cutting edge, their bicycle parts generally lagged behind the potential of the power sources. And Italians had a standing reputation for sporty, well-handling motorcycles. The founders took their inspiration from the Honda CB 750 F, which they felt definitely deserved a much better riding area. That became the HB1 (H for Honda, B for Bimota and the 1 stands for the first model with a Honda engine). This motorcycle immediately gained international recognition as the best handling motorcycle ever built up to that point.
The back cover
To cover things closer to home, Bimota also used Ducati power sources. The brand of the raw material used was indicated by the initial letter of that brand. That is reflected in our Bimita Tesi 1D with its warm beating Ducati heart. The Bimotas have always been technical toppers with many smart or revolutionary technical details. They were made by hand. An example? The frame tubes were set and machined by hand, after which a welder welded the frame tubes by hand. It was then finished by another employee and then extensively tested and viewed to ensure that a high-quality product was delivered.
Expensive in detail
And that is only one part of the machine. Bimotas were horrifyingly expensive. And bearing in mind the Italian philosophy that as a motorcycle manufacturer you only count if you spend every dollar earned three times on money-devouring track activities, thus guaranteeing the aforementioned financial triple jump over the years. In more than 25 years of its existence, Bimota has produced 11.000 engines, 90% of which went abroad. Today there is still a close group of Bimota enthusiasts and apparently Bimota are being made again. Or not?
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