For those who’ve by no means heard a six-cylinder bike at full tilt, you’re lacking out. It’s nothing wanting a mechanical symphony—or, in case you’re Portuguese, a ‘sinfonia.’ That’s the nickname that Lisbon’s Unik Version has given their newest undertaking; a screaming, six-cylinder Benelli Sei café racer.
The Benelli Sei won’t be probably the most recognizable basic six-cylinder bike (that honor belongs to the Honda CBX), nevertheless it was the primary six-cylinder manufacturing bike to hit the market. Benelli launched the 750 Sei within the early 70s, then adopted it up with the redesigned 900 Sei in 1979, which boasted an 80 hp output and angular bodywork. Solely 2,000 models of the Benelli 900 Sei had been produced, and so they weren’t low-cost.
Unik Version founders Tiago Gonçalves and Luis Gonçalves (not brothers) kicked this undertaking off with a 1979 Benelli 900 Sei, however little or no of the unique bike stays. Tiago and Luis stripped the bike all the way down to its body and engine, and changed or rebuilt all the things else.
“The purpose was to create an unimaginable piece with six exhausts, however straightforward to drive,” says Tiago.
To verify they had been constructing on a superb basis, the blokes gave the engine a strong refresh and tune-up. They’ve serviced a number of six-cylinder Benellis and Hondas, so that they know their method round these monstrous motors. The Sei’s three Dell’Orto carbs (sure, three) breathe via new pod filters.
It’s when Tiago and Luis moved to the chassis that issues actually acquired attention-grabbing. First, they hacked off the manufacturing unit subframe and fabricated a brand new one, then they trimmed the body in some areas and bolstered it in others. All of this was little one’s play in comparison with the swingarm swap that Unik had in thoughts.
The plan was to mate the single-sided swingarm from an early-2000s Ducati Monster S4R to the 1979 Benelli chassis. The primary problem was to revamp the rear finish with a brand new shock mount, changing it from a classic dual- to a contemporary mono-shock setup. The subsequent was re-aligning all the things, from the swingarm pivot to the sprockets, to accommodate a 190-wide rear tire.
It’s a radical change, nevertheless it’s well-executed. Complemented by a set of upside-down sportbike forks, and a pair of Kineo wire-spoke wheels, the rolling chassis is flawless.
Subsequent on the checklist was the Benelli Sei’s elegant new café racer-inspired bodywork. The Sei got here from the manufacturing unit with molded bodywork that lined a separate gasoline tank. Unik threw most of that within the bin, save for a small piece of the tank cowl.
A brand new monocoque physique was designed utilizing 3D software program, then 3D-printed molds had been used to form the ultimate half out of carbon fiber. It’s adorned with a pleated seat and a neatly built-in taillight.
Unik initially wished to retain the unique gasoline cell beneath the brand new physique, however ended up fabricating new gasoline and oil tanks out of aluminum as a substitute. That allowed them to create space for the bike’s battery below the physique too, together with a compact Motogadget management field, round which the entire bike has been rewired.
A customized headlight nacelle sits up entrance, fitted with an LED mild. Decrease down, a brand new entrance fender provides slightly retro superbike aptitude.
The rider seems down on a digital Motogadget speedo, neatly molded into the headlight housing. The German electronics firm additionally provided the switches, grips, keyless RFID ignition, and bar-end flip alerts and mirrors. The handlebars are from LSL, and the throttle is a Domino half.
Out again, a tidy license plate bracket places the plate behind the rear wheel with out including pointless size to the tail part. It wears a Koso license plate mild and a pair of tiny Motogadget LED flip alerts.
Ending issues off is the cornerstone of any good six-cylinder customized construct; the exhaust. Unik Version constructed an entire six-into-six system out of stainless-steel, with three stubby mufflers stacked on both facet.
With the stance, silhouette, and soundtrack all sorted, Tiago and Luis completed the Benelli off with an elegant white and inexperienced paint job. Gold pin-stripes add a contact of sophistication, purple accents tip their hat to the Italian flag, and a checkered stripe throughout the highest remembers the British café racers of yore.
More energizing than the odor of grass after a rainstorm, Unik’s Benelli is begging to be ridden. Simply think about unleashing that six-cylinder symphony on the sunny streets of Lisbon…