Far Ahead of Its Time: 1981 Bimota HB2 for Sale
As sleek and sexy as exotic cars and motorcycles may appear to the uninitiated, it’s under the skin where the really beautiful stuff generally lives. After all, you can cloak a pedestrian four-banger Fiero in fairly convincing Lamborghini bodywork, but pull the bodywork of this Bimota HB2 and the bike is perhaps even better-looking.
While the GSX-R is generally thought to have brought endurance-racing looks and monoshock frames to the masses, they certainly weren’t the first to actually build a bike like that for the road. That honor would likely go to Bimota and one of their lightweight Japanese-engined racers. This was at the tail end of the era before the Japanese Big Four really got their act together and made big bikes that could handle, and Bimota was happy to take their powerful and nearly unburstable powerplants and put them into packages that were uncompromisingly fast, lightweight, and devoid of mass-production compromises.
The HB2 was, as the alpha-numeric name suggests, the second Honda-powered bike built by Bimota. Only 10 HB1’s were built, the first made from a CB750 wrecked by Massimo Tamburini himself. 200 HB2’s were built following, making them almost mass-produced by Bimota standards. The HB2 was powered by the CB900F’s 90hp air/oil-cooled, four-valve, four-cylinder engine, wrapped in a lightweight trellis frame that saved almost 70lbs compared to the more traditional donor bike. The exhaust added a dab of power but was mainly intended to save additional weight.
It takes just 4 bolts and a single electrical connector to remove the lightweight fairing and allow unfettered access to the gorgeous mechanicals, as can be seen from the photos.
From the original eBay listing: 1981 Bimota HB2 for Sale
Great opportunity to buy a supper rare and highly collectable motorcycle, one of the first Bimotas,this one was 2nd generation using a Honda engine but was the 1st model Bimota implemented the billet plate to hold the frame together, was the most expensive and fastest production bike back in 1981. Is a very basic and simple motorcycle, engineered ,design and manufactured with one purpose, to serve one rider and provide the most handling and performance. Has a very cool spider web trellis frame, billet integrated plates to improve rigidity, magnesium wheels, magnesium legs 40 mm fully adjustable Italia(Certain) fork, billet triple tree and rear sets, one piece fiber glass body with tank cover and integrated seat. Bike is mostly stock with the exception of very rare Dellorto PH32 carbs, original came with Keihin carbs (very cheap and easy to obtain on eBay).
I purchased the bike from a collector, along with other motorcycle and unfortunately can’t keep them all, decided to sell a few, including this Bimota HB2.
The bike is very solid and in better than average shape but is not pristine, has scratches, dents, some other marks and scuffs as you can imagine for a 34 years old bike. I encourage who ever is interested to come for an inspection, bike has new tires, carbs and fluids taken care, starts and rides well but I only take her out for short rides, too precious to go the distance. Only 197 of these babies were made, this is#26 and titled in my name, Illinois title.
I have bunch of period magazine covering this bike and all of them have agreed the bike was a masterpiece and way ahead of its time, for years had no competition, was in a class all by herself/ I would included them with the bike.
Interestingly, these early Bimotas generally used the factory gauges for a less-exotic and bespoke, but far more reliable way to keep an eye on vital statistics: the gauges on 90’s Bimotas were almost comically erratic when they functioned at all. With plenty of time left on the auction, but no bidders and a starting bid of $11,000 there’s plenty of time to get in on a very collectible motorcycle in solid shape.