Cafe racers are one of the most iconic and distinctive styles of motorcycle in history. They were also arguably the epicenter of garage culture, as they were all born from stock street bikes stripped of everything unnecessary and modified by their owners and friends in garages in the pure pursuit of one thing: speed.
The original cafe racers were built on a tight budget, and so can yours with a quick weekend project.
Cafe racers typically feature three specific kinds of parts that give them their distinctive appearance and serve to improve the bike’s performance. They are the handlebars, the seat, and the exhaust system. Together, these parts streamline the bike’s aerodynamic profile to reduce drag, allow the bike to handle better at higher speeds, and — in the instance of the exhaust system — maximize horsepower to make the bike “do the ton.”
If you want to go a step further with you build, check out our Cafe Racer Style Guide.