We’ve started to notice a somewhat unfortunate trend in the world of custom motorcycles as of late. That is to say, there are a lot of builders out there who are sacrificing functionality in order to make room for style. And while we love a clever and new approach at a bike, we also still think ride-ability should be an inexorable part of the equation. Which is exactly why we love the 1973 Honda CB550 ‘Black Mamba’ by Dresden-based Hookie Co.
Honda’s CB series has long been a staple of the custom bike industry, but it’s been a while since we’ve seen anyone take a successful swing at this particular model. And seeing what Hookie Co. has done with it, that’s kind of a shame. This particular bike has benefitted from a full-scale cleaning and frame reduction; fitted with a custom fairing, modified gas tank, and features a completely rebuilt air-cooled transverse-four engine with pod filters and a free-flowing Spark exhaust. The back also sports new YSS shocks and the tires have been swapped for a pair of Bridgestone Battlax BT45s. That – along with a whole host of other tweaks, additions, and subtractions – has left us with a beautiful and, perhaps more importantly, functional urban cafe racer. Nice work, Hookie Co.