New Zealand is to be the first country outside of the US to see "Nehme-sis", a mindblowing 3.5-metre long gold-plated custom-built chopper.
"Nehme-sis" was today confirmed as the first star attraction for the 2013 CRC Speedshow in Auckland.
Next year's Speedshow might still be 10 months away, but the show's new owners Ross and Brenda Prevette are drawing on their US contacts as they begin lining up attractions for the July 20-21 show.
First on Prevette's sign-up sheet is "Nehme-sis", a gold-plated, multi award-winning, custom-built motorbike worth at least $US300,000.
Finished with 24 carat gold plating and a velvet seat, 3.5-metre long chopper has never been out of the US. Therefore, securing its New Zealand appearance is quite a coup for Prevette and due to connections he made via a Whakatane custom motorcycle venture he established, and has since sold.
"I haven't seen Nehme-sis myself, but it's totally mind-blowing from what I've seen in the media," Prevette says.
"Its name is a play on the name of its owner and builder Sam Nehme, who heads a Florida mega motorcycle dealership and custom motorcycle shop, called Broward Motorsports and BMS Choppers respectively.
"In the world of custom choppers which is dominated by Harley-Davidson powered machines, Nehme-sis is unique in that it started with a stock-standard Yamaha Road Star, which in US terms makes it a 'metric' chopper.
"Built in 2006, Nehme-sis made history by being the first metric chopper to win the Biketoberfest Rats Hole show in the show's 38 year history. If you follow custom bikes at all, you'll know how significant this is. Since then it's won virtually every other custom bike award in the US and has toured the US extensively.
"It's one of the most expensive custom bikes ever built, it's fully rideable with its amazing 360mm wide rear tyre.
"We're rapt that it's coming to New Zealand for Kiwi bike fans to see.... I can't wait to open that container for the first time and see it!"
Nehme is quoted in one of the numerous articles about this unique creation as saying: "With Nehme-sis, I saw myself as making the Frankenstein monster of motorcycles. I wanted to be different and do all that it was possible to do in one bike; to push myself further than ever—as if this was my last build."
Other key components of Nehme-sis:
* All that remains of the original bike is the 1700cc engine, the part of the frame that has the engine mounts, and the neck of the frame since that part includes the VIN number as Nehme wanted to keep this bike titled as a Yamaha Road Star.
* The build cost US$250,000 in labour alone to handcraft the machine from the ground up, excluding the cost of parts, paint and gold plating.
* Extensive design work and testing went into the single-sided front "fork," whose main spar is more than a metre long and machined from aluminium billet. Fully functional, it incorporates an air-ride system that, along with the single-sided swing-arm rear suspension, can lift the motorcycle 25 centimetres or lower it right onto the ground. In fact, a side stand is unnecessary as Nehme-sis softly lands on its frame rails when it's time to park.
* Making the most of the beautiful Road Star engine, BMS Choppers developed a new frame with no front down tubes, instead utilising the V-twin as a structural element.
* Nehme-sis sports an extraordinary 360mm rear tyre from Vee Rubber, flanked by a custom LED taillight/brake-light array integrated into the rear fender edges.
* An automatic clutch and a clever electronic grip shifter help clean up the overall lines. The rider selects gears by rotating the left handgrip, which can also switch modes to control the air-ride suspension on the fly.
* For space efficiency, the fuel tank was sectioned into two parts – one for petrol and the other for electronics.