Based in France, Michel and Jimmy Messina are a father and son duo that share a lifelong passion for hot rods and custom motorcycles. In 2019, the two officially founded Ride Different Kustom & Design, and despite the custom moto shop still being in its infancy, is already churning out world-class one-off works — the latest of which is this stunning, award-winning Buell S1.
Christened the “S1 MMC,” the project began as a much less ambitious endeavor, with the two originally aiming to drop a 101-hp 1,203cc V-Twin from a Buell S1 Lightning into the frame of a Voxan, however, it wasn’t long before things snowballed and the build quickly grew in scope. This included designing and fabricating a custom Voxan-inspired chassis that was paired with an underslung Buell-style monoshock, a single-sided swing-arm, and an inverted fork (complete with a twin-disc Brembo braking setup) plucked from a Ducati 1198 superbike.
The 45-degree V-Twin at the heart of the build has also received a pair of 39mm Keihin FCR carbs, high-flow filters, and a custom two-into-one exhaust culminating in an SC-Project carbon fiber muffler. Now tipping the scales at 432lbs (dry), the bespoke-built Buell also features a custom set of alloy bodywork with a knee-dented tank that perfectly nestles into the lines of the frame before feeding into a superbike-inspired suspended tail-section set atop an integrated subframe. Other details to round out the build include a custom SR1-branded sprocket cover, one-off rear sets, Marchesini wheels, a bespoke headlight assembly, custom triple trees, a custom SR1-branded saddle, and one-off carbon fiber front fender.
Winner of the AMD European motorcycle championship’s ‘Best In Show’ award, RD Kustoms’ MMC SR1 project currently exists as a prototype, though the fledgling French shop is accepting orders for additional MMC SR1 builds that are available with a wide range of configurable options, including with carbon fiber and forged carbon fiber bodywork.