Mac Motorcycles – A New British Motorcycle Company

Mac Motorcycles Peashooter

Mac Motorcycles Peashooter

Mac MotorcyclesRemember my recent articles saying it's a great time to start a motorcycle company? Well, I'm not the only one who thinks so, here's another one that just popped up across the pond in the UK, it's Mac Motorcycles and they have some really sweet designs, every one looks like it would be a blast to ride, which is fitting because, they're all powered by the Buell Blast 500 single.

They're planning 4 models, the Spud, Ruby, Peashooter and Roarer, all variations on a theme of lightweight simplicity, no plastic covered high tech racer replicas, these bikes are everyday riders with everything you need and nothing more.

Ellis Pitt, teamed up with Xenophya Design to produce these little beauties and they're planning to distribute first in the UK, North America and Japan with potential expansion into France and Australia.

Mac Motorcycles Ruby

Mac Motorcycles Ruby

No details yet of how soon these will be rolling out the door, but if the finished bikes look like these designs, I hope it isn't too long. We'll keep you posted.

I like the way these guys are thinking, forget the recession, just do it!

Mac Motorcycles press release:

New British Motorcycle Brand: ‘Mac Motorcycles’ Unveils Plans for a Range of new Motorcycles

A collaboration between one of the UK’s leading motorcycle design studios, Xenophya Design and Ellis Pitt has led to the launch of a new British motorcycle company called ‘Mac Motorcycles’.

Ellis has collaborated with the team at Xenophya for the past 9 months to design a small range of lightweight, air-cooled singles using the 500cc Buell ‘Blast’ motor in a tubular backbone frame.

Ellis explains “Between us we’d designed, modified, built and ridden all sorts of motorcycles over the last 30 years and thought it was time to produce a motorcycle that reflected our philosophy. Our influences have been diverse and we’ve made unusual connections between genres of motorcycles such as choppers, Italian singles from the 1950s, flat-trackers and competition specials. What underpins Mac Motorcycles’ philosophy though is the belief that the riding experience and the stories that go with motorcycle journeys seem to have been hijacked by technology and plastic.”

Mac Motorcycles Roarer

Mac Motorcycles Roarer

There are 4 different models ; ‘Spud’, for dossing about on, ‘Ruby’, the motorcycle equivalent of ‘the girl-next-door’, ‘Peashooter’, for squirting to your favourite pub and gassing with your mates and the ‘Roarer’, a modern-day dinosaur-chaser! The company initially plans to produce a few hundred bikes in small batches increasing production as appropriate.

During the last recession, Ellis, a product designer by background, grew his family’s business into a successful furniture manufacturing business before selling it in 1995. Since then he has combined work as a business adviser with design thinking, frequently developing successful products through a number of UK high street retailers.

Based in the small English town of Upton-Upon-Severn in Worcestershire, Mac Motorcycles plan to market this unique new range of motorcycles throughout the world. Bikes will be made in small batches for markets in the UK, North America and Japan, with customers in France and Australia in-mind too. Depending on your preferred specification and tuning options, you could expect to buy any one of these bikes for between £ 8k - £ 10k.

Link: Mac Motorcycles

Mac Motorcycles Spud

Mac Motorcycles Spud

Mac Motorcycles Roarer rear design sketch

Mac Motorcycles Roarer rear design sketch

Mac Motorcycles Peashooter front design sketch

Mac Motorcycles Peashooter front design sketch


  1. taxman says

    that Peashooter looks downright SICK!. the next thing i want to see is a reasonable price tag. if it’s in the ball bark of other bikes of similar engine size i’ll jump at the chance to own one.

  2. Nicolas says

    That’s what I’m talking about ! Very very good, one engine and 2 wheels, a simple yet atttractive design, that’s the way to go !

    That’s just a 3D rendering so far, would like to see the actual bikes setup for the open roads with real life configuration, but so far that looks like a great project.

  3. Chris M. says

    I like the looks and the idea of these bike but what is the exchange rate? 8-10K seems kind of high for a single 500cc. Wouldn’t that be around $14-16K for the lower priced units. Don’t get me wrong here I think they would make a great run around town bike, I’m just not sold on the price.

  4. JR says


    If it were less than ten grand…. I would probably place an order today. I’ve been looking for a bike with these aspects:

    single cylinder
    larger displacement (call it middle displacement)
    classic looks
    modern reliability
    fun to ride
    good fuel mileage
    fairly inexpensive

    This bike meets every one of them EXCEPT price. I know the price is high because of small volume…. so make more and sell them for less (problem solved)!

    For that money I could get almost two Thruxtons.

  5. fearnow says

    This is almost art-on-wheels, but last I heard the market for 10k fetish bikes is thin on the ground.

    Since the inclusion of the Blast motor is essentially an admission of cost-saving intent, could we maintain the form with fewer handmade parts, keep the function and cut the price by half?

    coz then, you’ve got a runner. (IMO)

  6. Phoebe says


    This is what I wish the Blast was really like (and I’m a Blast owner).

    I wouldn’t mind getting a roller from this company; I already have perfectly fine low-mile engine, and I could sell off all the stock parts to recoup costs. Hmm…

  7. Mark X says

    Alas! Yet another tease .Perhaps someone, someday, somewhere will get it. A lightweight, single cylinder motorcycle that real people FIT on, at a PRICE that real people find to be an acceptable value. Good luck to Mac Motors. Wonderful out-of -the -box thinking.. Handsome proof of concept models. I hope they can find enough high-end Brits, with enough loose cash to keep them in the black. Failing that, I am sure they will have a “blast”, riding their one-off customs. RideSafe, Mark.

  8. jjr says

    The Peashooter looks like with a fender change and different handle bars could make a decent dirt bike! How popular was/ is the BSA 441. The market (I) need a simple reliable single big cc dirt bike/street bike.
    Good looking bikes.

  9. Apikoros says

    These look fantastic, and I’d love to have one.

    Are there any Brits reading this? I don’t know if my riding style is best described as “squirting”, “gassing”, “dinosaur-chasing” or “dossing about”. How do I choose the right bike? A British acquaintance once told me I was a “wanker”, if that helps.

    Nah, nevermind, I want the Roarer.

  10. Jeff Ritter says

    I’d buy any of these bikes (except the Spud-not likeing that style) but alas they lack one thing-a motor. I like the single cylinder concept mind you, I almost bought a Muz Skorpion, but a Buell Blast engine? Nope. I’d rather throw a 450cc dirtbike thumper in there than keep the Buel Blast motor in it. Maybe they’ll hit it off and make their own rip roaring thumper and I’d consider spending the dough, in the mean time I’ll keep riding and owning Triumphs. Good Luck Mac Motorcycles.

  11. clive makinson-sanders says

    Beautiful! Simplistic! Everything im looking for in a 5000 dollar motorcycle….

    oh wait….

  12. Markkit says

    For a high end custom 4 stroke product, these designs lack impact, compared to say Confederate Motorcycles in the USA and they lack the performance of say Voxan in France.
    The idea of a retro custom bikes business in the lower price point brackets is probably more financially viable if you take the Japanese model of selling styled aftermarket parts that fit to all the new bikes to turn them into vintage ‘cafe racer’ type bikes, thus avoiding costs of in house assembly, take a trip to Tokyo and see all those ‘street trackers, and see what I mean, or look at Japanese custom street tracker magazines, to get a sense of how big the retro after market parts market is…In Japan many people buy a new bike and add aftermarket parts, not to make it ride any better, but to make it look retro.
    The most appealing option of all though, is to take to restoring or customizing vintage designs like Mule Motorcycles in the USA (see what he can do with an old XS650, or Heiwa in Japan, the list is endless. If you want to make performance bikes, then take a look at Moto Carrera in Los Angeles..There are so many old bikes lying un-used and un riden in every country, lets give life back to all the classics, instead of using our precious resources to make half baked products.

  13. Oakland Johnny says

    Wow! What a breath of fresh air! Manufacturers take note: these Mac guys get it and they’re going to get the money I would have spent on your bikes (if you made any that speak to me the way these bikes do.). Give the people what they want. Me? I want THAT!
    Best of luck, Mac. I hope to see you in my neck of the woods soon.

  14. JR says

    The more I look at it, the more I want the Spud. It’s like a softer Confederate Hellcat. I want that..

    Imagine how cool that Spud would be with a Girder front suspension!!!!!!!

  15. says

    As a previous Blast owner I had to move to a 650 Beemer to get the offroad aspect of my traveling needs covered. I would hope Eric might take notice of these rascals and try to cover the dual sport spot with a Ulyssis flavored Blast.

  16. The Ogre says

    Pretty! And probably, if they get built, a gas to ride. I do understand why they’d source the Buell motor, I think – but I do hope they tune it a bit. The stock one is pretty anemic.

  17. Larry says

    Can anyone give a valid reason (other than pure profit) why this cant be offered for no more than $4,000?

    I like everything about it, but what’s so “incredible” to justify such a price tag?

  18. Larry says

    Not sure if I agree with the choice of motor, but maybe they could offer a “universal frame” that could accept many different engine types. Could be a whole new market!!!

  19. kneeslider says

    In reference to questions about the engine, this is from their website:

    “Stock motors produce 34 HP at 6500 RPM but a bolt-on big-bore kit (515 cc), Andrews Cams, a Mikuni HSR 42 carb’, Screamin’ Eagle ignition and a Supertrapp exhaust will produce around 50 HP at 7200 RPM. A Blast running an NRHS 515 kit set a record at Bonneville in the 650 class”

    As the press release says, “Depending on your preferred specification and tuning options …” so it looks like you can get the high spec engine right from them.

    Besides, just how much horsepower do you think you’re actually using from your 180hp race replica when you’re riding on public roads?

    In reference to the many of you who always believe the price is too high and it should be offered at less than half of the quoted price (no matter what it happens to be), try to do that yourself, become a “doer.” You’ll quickly learn a lot about running a business and find out out why things cost what they do.

  20. says

    I volunteer to be your first test rider! Let it rock and roll – the Blast will steal your soul! Sweet Idea!

  21. Mark Thump says

    Sigh… I wish it would work, but where is the battery? The Blast electric start uses a pretty big one. The clamp-on air filter and rather small muffler will be too noisy for any Federal standards, here or in England. I think that if the head was strong enough to support the engine, Buell would have done it. Does it lose the vibration damping of the Blast? Other than these little problems, it looks great!

  22. taxman says

    i’m sure that they have to charge that much to pay for the materials and make a little profit on the side. that’s why it’s difficult to be a “doer” and succeed. the only thing that brings the cost down is mass production. hopefully a company that has the capability to mass produce will see the clamor and realize that people (at least some of us) want a stylish bike in a smallish package. there is nothing wrong with us wishing for a price package more in line with mainstream competition.

    as far as HP goes, i’d prefer the 50HP setup. but i do feel that that is plenty for everyday use. especially in a lightweight bike like this.

  23. SteveD says

    I really like the idea and the designs. Unfortunatley, I wouldn’t buy one for over $10,000 since I could get a Ninja 250 for $4000. Realisitc price point or not, I don’t think this will fly in the US unless they cost under $10K.

  24. says

    Think about the shot in the arm this would do for Harley-Davidson and Buell if they had produced these bikes.

    Talk about a simple and low cost approach to addressing the demographic shift HD is facing as the baby boomers begin to stop riding. These bikes would address both demographics (some current HD/Buell riders while attracting new riders to the brand).

  25. Mehul Kamdar says

    Beautiful machines! How about H-D / Buell licensing the design and building it in Milwaukee? They could bring prices down because of their size and this would be a welcome addition to their range.

  26. Markkit says

    Just a generous comparison; a £ 7K Yamaha R6 or an £8 – £10K Mac Ruby…let me see which one I would buy..Sure they are 2 different bikes, but what the Mac lacks in performance it does`nt add in anything else, it adds in style you say, I don`t think it even has the style of a £ 6K Bonneville…And why that engine, it has such lame history. Why was the blast ever invented anyway, don`t begginers usually buy used bikes that are better and cheaper so it does`nt matter when they`re dropped…Putting such a lousy engine on such an expensive bike is nonsense, regardless if you can get 50 HP…If anything I would`nt put all my eggs in one basket by using the blast engine only, use other engines for the better models..Also $8000 or £5000 starting price is more realistic for such a bike I think, you`ll have to be creative, not only in the styling..Good luck.

  27. GenWaylaid says

    Mac could reach a much larger market by offering these bikes (or something like them) as kits for existing Buell Blasts. Find a used Blast, order the parts you want from Mac, spend some quality time with a set of wrenches, and you could have a single nearly as pretty as these for much less. Maybe you’d even get under $5000 if you could sell the parts you took off, who knows?

  28. todd says

    Nice, I like these. If only Yamaha understood enough to import the SR400/500, XTZ, or the SZR; Suzuki the GR650 Tempter; Honda’s CB400SS; Derbi’s Mulhacen 659 Cafe; CCM CR-40…

    I don’t have the time to start my own company building and selling these so I have my GB500 and buy up old trail bikes to convert to cafe racers. There’s got to be tens of thousands of people interested in lightweight single road bikes. Why aren’t the major manufacturers tapping into that?


  29. Tirapop says

    Nice. Very pretty bikes, but, as it’s already been stated, price is an issue and it’s going to limit its market. The market in the States is going to be pretty small. Think of all the tasty mid-displacement street thumpers that never moved many units at the dealers: SR500, SRX-6, GB500, FT500, Skorpion, etc. They appeal to a small niche who only grudgingly buy a few of them. I would start reaching for my wallet if Buell or Mac sold a bike like this:

    Would the K&N style filters on these bikes pass the noise regs or would they need an airbox to quiet the intake honk.

    Maybe a bike like this would be better sold as a kit. Put it all together a la carte. Maybe go with EPA legal S&S top ends in a proprietary case and a non-unit transmission to avoid the Blast association.

  30. frozen prairie says

    The bikes look great and I like the choice of engine too. Not every bike has to have four valves per cylinder and twin cams. For those of you who want that sort of thing, there are plenty of mass market options out there, or you can just build something yourself and I’m sure Paul would be happy to post pictures of it here on the Kneeslider. We’d all like to see those, I’m sure.
    I’ve toured from John O’ Groats to Tamanrassett and plenty of places in between on a 28HP 500cc single. It was fine. More horsepower wouldn’t have made the journey any more fun. When I wrenched at a Honda/Suzuki/Kawasaki dealership the bike I owned had 103 HP; that was neat too.
    I think the Macs would sell well in Japan (the Brat style guys and other similar builders seem to be doing ok). France, Britain and Oz have plenty of thumper fans as well (Germany, Holland, Italy and the RSA too, for that matter), just check out some of the XT group websites. In North America… hmmm. I think they could sell, though it might take a shift in what is considered cool looking.
    Here in Canada, Harleys are quite expensive but there are lots of people who are willing to shell out 20 to 30 thousand dollars (and more) for a bike that is not terribly fast or great handling. Why? Because their idea of what riding is all about dovetails nicely with the looks and performance of those bikes.
    So, cheers to the Mac guys. They’re doing something risky and exciting – starting a company, building motorcycles they’ve designed. How many of us have done that?.

  31. John says

    love it. I’ve been cyber obsessing over single like the srx600 for a couple of years. Companies like mac and deus have got the idea. I’ve seen a streetfightered blast on ebay that looks pretty cool as well. I think the engines should definitely stay air cooled, for the looks, keep the bike light and it would be a blast to ride. A kit would be a great idea. make one for the 250 ninja as well. The little ninja’s engine looks good naked, just needs a ’04 z1000 headlight fairing and some flat bars.

  32. David says

    This whole conversation got me wondering is there even a source for air cooled singles in the 500 to 700cc range now that the Rotax 604 series is no longer available? I am helping my youngest son with a similar size build using a Yamaha 500 single. We find parts or build what we need. I don’t know what is out there for small production runs and all the gristle that goes with retailing a product.

  33. JR says

    I’m going to agree with the idea that you don’t always need 100 hp. My XS850 puts out maybe 70hp and I think the bike is too heavy and doesn’t need all the power for just going to and from work and blasting down the old country roads. I always get stuck behind cars anyway.

    I’ve ridden 100 hp CBR600R’s and 30 hp bike dirtbikes and had more fun on the dirtbikes, because you can use the power.

  34. Randy says

    Maybe this will awaken some tiny inking in Eric Buells awareness that riders like a little style in their bikes and that Buells (including Blasts) are just too strange looking. If Buell would come out with a reasonably styled bike (say XR750), reasonably good performing (~400 pounds, grunty 60 HP, decent suspension), they couldn’t make enough to keep up with demand. And don’t tell me about the HD XR1200, it’s a bloated boxy 560 pound excuse.

    A 30 HP 500cc non-counterbalanced single is a bit of a joke. OK for Royal Enfield but this is just dumb. There’s the Yamaha XT660, Suzuki DR650, Rotax, at least use an engine that allows some limited highway capacity. I’ve owned three SR500’s. I like them, am tolerate of their limitations, but I KNOW why Yamaha doesn’t import them to US anymore.

    I don’t like the giant backbone look of the MACs, the more I see it the less I like it. And what’s with the rear tire on the front? As noted above, this will probably be the last we see on “MAC”.

  35. nortley says

    I like this. A modern but simple single that doesn’t look like a dirt bike with street trim or a contemporary machine made to look retro. J T Nesbitt and his Wraith didn’t influence this design any by chance? Mac did it better if so. Yeh, I’d use a Mac for the daily ride and save the ’54 MAC for putting into town for the sunday paper.

  36. davidabl says

    Read it with interest, until I came to the Buell Blast engine part.
    While I understand the elemental appeal of the aircooled single, surely
    there are still some better, cheaper oriental alternatives?

  37. John Hyslop says

    The SRX is a cult bike. So is the GB500. There are not a million people waiting with checks in hand for a bike like this so thinking it could be produced for 5 grand is sort of…well, ignorant. Price a set of Dymag wheels, a set of Marzoccchi or Ohlins USD forks and a new Blast engine. Now add to that the tooling costs for a new gas tank, frame, electrical diagrams for wiring, a warranty program, amortization costs for EPA tests and registering as a legal manufacturer, etc, etc, etc. There are lots of talented people on here that could build a nearly exact replica of one of the bikes pictured sourcing parts from Ebay, wrecking yards and online sources for just a few grand. There are NOT a lot of folks who are capable of doing it a couple hundred times a year. The overhead on a business of this size is much highter than most people might expect.

  38. todd says

    David, I’m sure there are plenty of air cooled singles available; Just off the top of my head there’s the XR650L, the DR650, the Savage, and the Bullet (though not in Calif.).

    Part of the reason these bikes never sell well is because they don’t advertise them. I never knew about the GB500 until 1991, around the same time they shipped all the remaining unsold ones off to Germany. I never saw one at a dealership (’89 and ’90), never saw any ads on TV or in magazines and I didn’t read Cycle World, preferring Brit bike mags instead. Kawasaki made the same mistake with the W650. The people who would have bought truck loads of those (like my dad) don’t read magazines slanted towards Ninjas and GSXR’s.


  39. Den says

    Lovely looking designs and website, I agree that H-D/Buell could learn some lessons from the styling seen here. Outright HP is not everything in the real world and I am sure that the power would be adequate, especially with the extra mods. I do agree with some of the comments regarding engine choice, I would prefer the less traditionally pretty options that are brought in by other builders, say a Rotax 650(BMW, Aprilia, CR&S), Minarelli 660 (Yamaha, Derbi), the Suzuki used by CCM or maybe a Honda single, but hey horses for courses, I am not the one starting up a MC business like these doers!

    Of course there are problems with the practicality of the design, it’s a concept people! The design is someone’s vision, it has to invoke passion in potential investors, customers and suppliers.The practical problems should get ironed out during prototyping, testing and manufacture whilst hopefully still maintaining the essence of the original vision.

    Fantastic work, I wish them all the best!

  40. dave says

    very nice!! the peashooter looks like an ecosse for a fraction of the cash. put a bigger motor in it and count me in!!!

  41. motojin says

    The more I look at these bikes, the more I like them. The Spud appeals to me the most. Excellent lines from the frame through the tank.

    I’m not turned off by the Buell engine. 34hp in a light-weight motorcycle is more than adequate for my needs. My daily rider is a ’79 XS1100, and it’s a heavy old lump. I could use a smaller, lighter bike that’s more responsive. I just worry if the Mac’s XS-sized frame will fit my XXL-sized frame.

    The price does put a wrench in my daydreaming, but it’s not a deal-killer. It would take a while to save up for it, but having a sexy, bespoke bike is worth a bit of sacrifice.

  42. Randy says

    I think many people romanticize about 500cc singles without having actual experience with them. FWIIW, I’ve owned and ridden 3 different SR500’s, a SRX600, and a XL500, In the first place “34 horsepower” is probably more like 25-28. In the second place accessing that peak HP is a tooth rattling, vision elongating, vibratory mess, It basically limits you to 60-65 mph for the long run. This is very unlike say a Ninja 250, which has the same peak HP but is smooth enough to cruise at 70-75 mph. So, prepare to be out gunned by any modern car above 50 mph or so. You WILL BE the slowest thing out there,

    Romping around on surface streets on such a machine is OK, as is totting along country lanes. These bikes are fun for certain things, but in any freeway or highway situation you become an obstacle. I rode down Baja one year with a group of mostly Norton riders (I was on a Multistrada) that included a rider on a GB500. Every single section we waited for that person to catch up. Many times it would get stuck behind a truck – it could not safely pass anything!

    I like small bikes, but I buy old ones cheap and then have a little slow fun. $10K (say $14K OTD) for a toy? Neat.

  43. JR says

    Now it wouldn’t look as good for sure… but imagine a big KTM liquid-cooled single in these bikes!

    They would absolutely HONK

  44. markkit says

    The romance of the single cylinder is spot on (good one Randy), motorcycle design has already been hijacked by plastic and technology, now its time for ‘retro’ to seduce us into buying a ‘new’ kind of bike that we can only really use in the city and which costs thousands more than other bikes. It will be great for a few miniutes of posing, until a Super-Duke pulls up alongside, or even a Guzzi V7 Classic (£ 5.5 K) , or a Ducati GT1000 (£ 7 K)…Note that the Japanese market is full of cheaper retro bikes; , most are production stock Kawasaki, Yamaha 250 cc bikes with bolt on aftermarket components that make them look cool and good for posing, also 250 cc is good for city use also, it can also go on the motorway I think.

  45. JimmyR says

    I like ’em. Sure, they’re not exactly what I would have thought of but they look wonderful, quirky and cool. I want a Roarer! Make mine a belt drive.

  46. David says

    Randy you maybe right, I toured all over the US on a 441Victor in the early 70’s and of course you had to safety wire everything to keep it from falling off but so did most every one. Rose colored glasses and 40 years make it all seem feasible again.

  47. nobody says

    Page 30, Cycle World, July 2009:
    Moto Guzzi V7 Classic – 39 horsepower, 37 ft-lbs of torque. Wow.

    Page 62, Roadracing World 2009 Track Day Directory:
    Kawasaki Ninja 250R – 24.68 horsepower, 12.54 ft-lbs of torque. Anyone who thinks their VTR does any better is seriously delusional.

    So why doesn’t H-D do it? A single only costs a few hundred (at the most) less to build than a twin, yet is expected to sell for half the price of the twin. Why bother?

    That does explain a lot about Buell and the B last.

  48. todd says

    A stock GB500 (33hp) will do over 100 mph. I’ve had mine up to 105 with my wife on the back, full of camping gear going across the San Mateo Bridge. The key is to use every bit of the available RPM (the GB is smooth because of its counter-balancer) before shifting up. I also have a ‘moto’d XR650L that does the freeways just fine. Heck, only my cafe’d XL350 (I don’t know, 20hp?) would just start feeling uncomfortable around 85 or more – only due to vibration.

    I exchanged bikes once with my friend’s CBR600 F3. He said the GB felt pretty powerful! I think the problem is that he would shift his CBR at 6 or 7000 RPM and be in top gear by 50 mph. That works just fine on the GB but I never made it out of third in his CBR (around 100 mph). People need to learn how to let a motor run at the RPM it was designed to run. No short shifting, no running around at 3000 RPM, lugging the motor. Let a 500 single run and breathe the way it was designed to and it’s well more than adequate.


  49. says

    I remember Chris Carr being clocked on the straight of the Peoria TT track at 103 with a breathed on Blast engine in the chassis. Now I have also seen a Blast taken out to 750 cc but never marketed. There is potential to have fun with the engine but singles won’t be for everyone but then maybe they need to start somewhere as a beginning.

  50. WRXr says

    I like it, with reservation. I don’t think they take the idea far enough.

    I see a lot of Wraith here (tubular back-bone frame). I wish they would hide the gas in the frame (like Buell) and the oil in the swing arm (like Buell), and put the exhaust underneath. So you’d have a really uncluttered, skeletal look. I wouldn’t car if the gas tank/frame only held 2-3 gallons. This is not a long haul bike anyway.

    The carb and K&N filter jutting into the space under the tank, looks like an afterthought. Must go. Give it the Keihin EFI from the Enfield Bullet.

  51. says

    “nobody”, you do realise that the Ninja 250 and the VTR250 aren’t the same bike and don’t share the same engine, right? Try getting your facts right before you start claming delusions.

  52. nobody says

    You are right – the 250 Ninja has a better engine and was proven to be faster at the track a very long time ago. I agree – facts are good.

  53. todd says

    Then there were all those 40 + horse (race tuned) 500cc Norton, BSA, and Matchless singles that could run up to 150 mph with the right gearing (un-faired). What more could you expect?


  54. nobody says

    Here’s the dyno results from NRHS – the same people who said a stock Blast was putting out 34 hp:

    Just how exciting can 50 hp be? Go to an AHRMA event and find out.

    Heck, if the FIM is going to have a Moto2 spec engine class (which just got something like 47 team applications for 91 riders), maybe AHRMA should have a Blast spec engine class. Classic vibe without the unobtanium.

  55. todd says

    That’s no stock Blast putting out 50.8 HP. Considering that Grands Prix 500 singles were lucky if they put out 50 HP. I’m not saying it isn’t possible nowadays just that it isn’t stock. My GB500 feels ever so slightly more powerful than a Blast, it was rated at 33.36 HP at 7000 RPM when tested by Cycle magazine in 1989. It’s obviously not a collectible bike because of its power output. I do feel it’s completely adequate, and fun. Much the way these Blast based bikes should be.

    That CBR250RR would be big fun. Probably runs like a two-stroke.


  56. nobody says


    You are right – it is far from stock. But it is attainable and obtainable.

    That CBR250 sounds like a neat idea – but I get the impression that they were part of an artificial class created for home market license restrictions rather than a demand for screamy little bikes. It also sounds like the whole 4-cyl 250 market died about 10 years ago when the license restrictions were changed.

  57. todd says

    I always wonder if it is artificial. How many CB350 / CB400s or RD350’s were sold when plenty of Z1’s and CB750’s were available? 30 someodd horse bikes used to be acceptable, actually, desired. I’ve ridden all of the above and the former are much more fulfilling than the latter. Now that they take these types of models away they say no one would want them, that people buy 100HP 600’s. Do we have a choice? Isn’t this the whole reason vintage bikes sell so well?


  58. nobody says


    To your last 2 questions: Yes.

    I used to lust after Japan’s home market 250 & 400 machines 15-20 years ago. I quit paying attention to them after that. It was a shock to find out that the high tech 250 & 400 class has been dead for quite some time – until I realized why. They cost pretty much the same as (or even more than) the 600s – without the restrictions, the market died. Back when the RD350 etc… were new, they cost a whole lot less than the bigger bikes. Heck, I bought a brand new leftover RZ350 in 1986 for $2000.00. The shop owner said that nobody would take a 350 seriously in that area – I was there looking for an SRX600, which his shop never even got. That era is long gone and dead.

    A few years later, Honda brought out the GB500, HawkGT, and CB1 – slick rational bikes – and they were considered way overpriced by most and chased a lot of CBR600s out the door.

    The other reason is that modern motorcycles just age well, yet depreciate badly. It is hard for people to justify spending a lot on a new lightweight when a nice used middleweight (haven’t heard that term in a long time) or heavyweight can be had for the same price. And those desirable vintage bikes are still bargains by new bike standards – not a bad thing.

    Then there was the reputation – saying “Z1” or “Honda 750-Four” when I was younger to the other gearhead kids generated nods of reverence. Those bikes were, to us, obviously bought by Real Men. Everyone else bought the smaller bikes. Well, it turns out that Z1s and CB750s weren’t he-man bikes after all. A 550 pound bike does the same thing as a 350 pound bike – and they both hurt the same if you don’t know what you’re doing.

    And the throttle works in both directions. A 100 hp bike can still put out 30 hp. Or the same 10 hp or so it takes to go down the road at 60 mph. I’ve yet to ride a bike that I wish made less power. Except for a summer spent on an AR80 (no kidding), I’ve never ridden a bike that could even use every available horsepower at all times, either.

    Those are my thoughs & opinions – I have no charts to prove any of it.

  59. Nicolas says


    I’m riding a cafe racer 1975 Honda CB500t, which would be considered as the ancestor of your beloved GB500 ? Pretty sharp looking, beautiful engine, great sounds, old time vibrations, but it pushes out only around 30-35 hp or sthg. That’s enough to have a dynamic daily commute, I even keep up with my buddies on 600’s in the twisties, but to be honest it’s more cafe than racer …
    I really love this thing, nothing on the road compares to it’s flair, but sometimes a bit more “umpf” would be appreciated … so I really think a brand new Mac should have at least 50 hp and decent torque to make me and my 10 Grands happy.

  60. Jimmy says

    This is an exceptional looking bike, but as we all know, looks don’t sell for $10K…
    Buell should sell this bike for $5999 I am thinking Buell is working on something new since they crunched the last of the Blasts. I am still confused about why it would take Buell so long to come up with nothing new as far as the Blast goes? Mac is nothing more than a chain driven Blast. Buell has fallen asleep here.

  61. john mathews says

    Interesting bikes, far to expensive, put a better single cylinder in them.
    The thing that i find difficult is WHO IS ELLIS PITT!
    Ive been in the bike trade all my working life and nobody knows this name, what is his back ground or where did he steal this idea off. Please let me know

  62. digger says

    love the concept and execution,but the blast motor makes a great boat-anchor.i agree the sr/xl/dr motors would be sweet…quick and reliable. why can’t these flegling british bike companies make their own engines? having said all this,I’D like this bike with a british-built ohc air-cooled single 600cc with an oil cooler,6 speed,and kick-only to weed-out posers. oh,and an on/off road version(styled like a 60’s scrambler)