This custom BMW R1200 R 'Spitfire' is a flamethrower on wheels
If you're looking for a unique but low-key motorcycle, the VTR Customs Spitfire is definitely not for you. Having served on the official BMW Motorrad Custom Race Team piloted by the marque's fast and glamorous Munich-based employee Amelie Mooseder, extensive media coverage is said to have exposed it to a remarkable 57 million people around the world.
Built to compete in the 'factory' class of the 2018/2019 Sultans of Sprint series, this remarkable machine is based on a BMW R1200 R – but the extensive modifications carried out by VTR CEO Dani Weidmann and his Zurich craftsmen make the bike unrecognisable both in terms of appearance and performance, helping it to rack up no fewer than nine podium places for everything from the quality of its build to its ability to cover an eighth-of-a-mile of Tarmac in double-quick time.
Inspired by the celebrated WWII fighter plane of the same name, the Spitfire is a throwback to the days when Weidmann worked in the field of vintage warbird restoration. Roughed out in sketch form by the French Barbara Design Studio, it was brought to life by VTR's fabrication experts, who hand-made all of the aluminium plates forming the unique fuselage-style riveted bodywork that, thanks to the bike's lowered front forks and rigid rear end, sits just 90cm above the ground at its highest point.
Beneath that slippery shape lurks a heavily tuned version of BMW's famous boxer twin engine. Running on a nitrous-oxide boost, it puts out an impressive 170 horsepower, which reaches the slick-clad rear wheel of the 206kg machine through a racing clutch and a Moto GP-style quickshifter gearbox, complete with traction control and launch mode.
But this wildest of custom bikes is not only Spitfire by name, but also 'spit fire' by nature – because an aircraft toggle switch fitted in the cockpit enables the custom-made VTR exhaust system to throw flames up to three metres long into the air.
The cockpit also contains original instruments from a wartime Spitfire, along with the ABM Vario Clip customised handlebars and Magura HC3 control levers that became so familiar to Mooseder as she raced the VTR Spitfire in eighth-of-a-mile sprints throughout Europe at locations including Monza in Italy and Montlhery in France, as well as at Germany's hugely popular Glemseck motorcycle festival.
The VTR Spitfire – which was built with the backing of BMW Motorrad and watch brand T.W. Steel – is now being offered for sale by Zurich-based VTR with a price tag of $89,000. Showing just 150km on the clock (most of which were, admittedly, covered at race speed) the fire-breathing one-off is on the button and ready to go as soon as the world opens up again.