Motomato's Kawasaki KZ750
By James McCombe - 30 Jun 15
Like a simple Neopolitan pizza the Amalfi coast road has all the key ingredients for something memorable. Though only 30 miles from Salerno to Sorrento, the short but sweet combination of twisting asphalt, incredible vistas and pounding sun provides everything the average motosapien could want. This unsubtle simile of ingredients fits beautifully with today's bike. With such densely packed motorcycling inspiration, the simple beauty of Motomato's KZ750 is the perfect companion for just such a road. It was on that road, 10 years ago, that two young Italians met. Thraping their two stroke machines to the limits on a near daily basis lit a spark which has rapidly ignited their lives. Now 26, Gerardo and Gianluca's passion for bikes has been made official under the Motomato banner. Growing up, spannering on old machines was natural. Stripping back an old BMW felt like a childhood dream come true; "Like Lego for grown ups". When work and studies would allow, hours were spent in the garage fettling, getting the creations ready for the Amalfi test circuit. So a year ago, feeling that no-one in the south of Italy had really got the right balance of techniques, ideas and passion, the guys got serious and began their first proper build; a BMW. With just a a portable Beta tool case, a bottle of grease and a whole bunch of sketches, the challenge was on to make something that represented the beauty of the region. A bike that represented the qualities they admired, inspired by the best names in the scene. But most importantly, that when they rode their creations, that feeling of when the first hit 100km/h 10 years ago would come rushing back. Always with an eye on the next build, donor hunting was routine for the guys. Having spotted an unloved Kawasaki KZ750, abandoned in a car park, a big of digging found it had been there for more than 30 years. The perfect candidate then. The guys challenged themselves on this build to reach a new personal level of quality and accuracy in the details. It shows in the photos. The pursuit to hide all but the key components takes time. Running wires through the bars and frame, simplifying the loom to a skeleton system and replacing the original chunky OEM components allowed the battery, relays and electrics to be hidden in a beveled case, tucked behind the engine. Discreet and classy. With clip-ons in place of the standard bars, the top yoke became unnecessarily cluttered. Drawn up on CAD a pretty, new item was CNC'd. Designed to host nothing but the speedo, even the starter button was relocated to the headlight shell to provide the rider with minimal distractions. The rusted out wheels were stripped and rebuilt with new rims and spokes; contrasting black powder and stainless is a classic combination. Trued up and clad in some Avon Speedmasters, the vintage style rubber will certainly keep the rider focused on the coastal sprint. Rebuilt calipers are now supplied fluid from a new Brembo master cylinder through braided lines meaning the brakes now work in both function and appearance. A real boon, when that cliff-side corner tightens it's radius! The oil-tight parallel twin needed a thorough service and some elbow grease to get the worst of the corrosion off, but the ever reliable lump sprang into life eagerly when asked. Rebuilt carbs breath through pod filters and have been jetted to make the most of the new 2:1 exhaust. An amiable amount of wadding in the silencer keeps the neighbours happy, but the bike still sings when it's asked for an encore. It doesn't get a lot more classic than British Racing Green and brown leather, a combination which defines this other wise monochromatic build. Splashed sparingly over the battery box and fabricated mudguards, the colour is distinctly un-Italian but very fitting for the style of the build. The shrunken lighting setup, rebuilt sprung parts and spattering of Tarozzi parts finish the bike. Those rearsets ensure the new riding position is balanced for the pilot as they head out to try their luck amongst the scooters on the asphalt. In profile the cleanliness of the build, it's uncluttered lines and simple finishes, work together beautifully. With the key idea of the build to minimize, removing the unnecessary and boosting weaknesses. The bike looks a treat. The Motomato guys are rightly happy with the result; "A sleek yet usable everyday ride, with a classic and confident cafe racer look". Can't argue with that! Follow the guys as they spread time between garage and coast road, over on their FB page and Instagram feed.