EICMA Redux: Exotic Unobtanium

Ah, Bimota: Purveyor of what could be the world’s finest motorcycles, yet selling very few of those bikes. Once more, the manufacturer was showing off beautiful new machines at EICMA, but we’ll likely never see them for sale here.

That includes the new Impeto (with optional supercharger), Tesi 3D, and a DIY-focused BB3 which debuted at this year’s show,

There are two reasons behind Bimota’s production inconsistency: Funding, and availability of components. Bimota is constantly up for sale, which makes it hard for the boutique marque to get around to producing motorcycles in any volume at reasonable prices. It’s hard to buy one if they don’t exist in any large quantities.

The Bimota BB3 is now available as a kit -- you provide your own engine.
The Bimota BB3 is now available as a kit — you provide your own engine.

As well, Bimota often relies on other manufacturers to supply components for their machines, particularly engines. Sometimes, they can’t get their hands on those engines, which means they can’t reach production goals, which is supposedly partly what torpedoed their last efforts in World Superbike.

Now, though, you can work around that by buying Bimota’s new DIY bike, the BB3.

This bike originally broke cover in 2013, and was powered by a BMW S1000RR motor. Bimota is now selling that bike without the motor — buyers can build the machine themselves, sourcing their own motor. It’s an interesting idea that works around their issues sourcing motors, but we’re not holding our breath waiting for a huge influx of Bimotas on the privateer superbike scene.

The Impeto naked bike will have an optional supercharger.
The Impeto naked bike will have an optional supercharger.

Bimota’s other new bikes were quite interesting, featuring some radical design work and striking looks. They were showing off a new naked bike, the Impeto, that has an optional supercharger. Forced induction is making a comeback, and Bimota seems ready to explore this field.

The Impeto is powered by a Ducati Diavel engine, and the supercharger bolts on to that motor between the cylinders. It’s a vane-type supercharger manufactured by Sprintex, with no intercooler — Bimota says they’ve been able to design the intake system and tune the EFI so it’s not needed.

With that supercharger, Bimota thinks the bike will make more than 180 hp. They also say the supercharger will fit on other models they sell, although they haven’t adapted all their lineup for it yet. They haven’t announced a price for the supercharger, and it would likely be very difficult to acquire in Canada anyway.

Here's Bimota's supercharger, which will be adapted to other bikes in their lineup.
Here’s Bimota’s supercharger, which will be adapted to other bikes in their lineup.

The supercharged Impeto is interesting, but not as radical as the Tesi 3D RaceCafe (the bike in the title photo), with its hub steering derived from the Tesi 3D. This modern cafe racer take on that platform may or may not make it into production, and if it does, it also likely won’t make it to Canada. But hey, it’s nice to look at, right?

The Tesi 3D Race Cafe is mechanically basically the same as the standard Tesi 3D, although carbon-fibre swingarms front and rear (that sounds weird …) mean weight should be down a bit, and handling ought to be a bit quickened.

However, like the rest of their lineup, if this bike does make it to production, you’ll never see one one on the streets here — Bimota is truly the definition of Unobtanium for the Canadian buyer.


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