Quebec’s Purebreed Brooklyn Project

Modern custom bikes are a far cry from the Orange County Chopper interpretations of not so long ago. Gone is the chrome, the rake and gold-plated v-twins. In is the café, with clip ons, solo seat, and minimalistic styling. I prefer the latter, but much like how the chopper craze started, the grass root phase of the café racer is giving way to the professional builder, with a price tag to match.

One of the latest such enterprises to spring is Purebreed Cycles, based just outside Montreal, Quebec, but soon to open a workshop in Brooklyn, New York. Purebreed is the creation of bike builder Guillaume Brochu and has teamed up with BMW Motorrad Canada to create 40 custom café racers around BMW’s S1000R naked roadster.

Titled the Brooklyn Project, the S1000Rs go through a 24 kg weight loss program thanks to carbon fibre wheels, tank, fenders, subframe and cowl. Power is also boosted by 15 hp due to the addition of new engine mapping and an Arrow performance pipe. Other mods include aluminum rad and oil cooler, clip ons, adjustable rear sets, new seat, LED tail light, and folding levers to name but a few.

Since Purebreed see these bikes being used extensively for track day use, many parts have been designed for easy removal so that you’re not on the track in road legal mode. The company also says that each unit will be unique, based on owner input, though it’s unclear how much leeway there will be.

If you’re interested in a unique, lighter and more powerful S1000R, contact Purebreed. Delivery starts in April. Cost is a significant US$39,500 (about CA$55,000).


Check out all the pics that go with this story! Click on the main sized pic to transition to the next or just press play to show in a slideshow.


  1. He made one for a friend…. he scrapped entirely the project. This guy said so many things and made maybe half of what my friend requested and was late over 3 month. Seriously I would not recommend this shop.

  2. He was great at totally rebuilding vintage motorcycle in the best possible way, and producing fantastic motorcycles in his little shop in a small town. He decided to go from that, to… customizing brand new motorcycles for BMW, in New-York city.

    I wish him all the success in the world, I never hope for people to fail, ever. But I can’t help but think of the word sell-out when I read this story. I guess the man’s gotta make a living.

  3. I’ve seen some the TV shows where he takes a very old bike to builds a Cafe Racer. Pretty impressive (and better I think than stripping down a bran new BMW)

  4. Yet another hack job on a perfectly good stock motorcycle. These guys wouldn’t know a real ‘Cafe Racer’ if it ran ’em over in the street.

Join the conversation!