To get an understanding of the amazing work of art that is 'Project Nurb' - the one-off six-cylinder BMW Special that will compete in this week's World Championship of Custom Building in Germany - it is necessary to look at the starting point for this project, a BMW K 1600 GT luxury touring machine.With fully-enclosed, wind-cheating bodywork, and weighing in at over 300 kilos, the 160 hp top-of-the-range long-distance tourer would surely be a long way down the list of prospective 'donor' machines for any professional customiser - but Fred Krugger likes a challenge.The Belgian ace has made his reputation creating head-turning and world championship winning bikes, but this show-stopping marvel may never have seen the light of day, had it not been for the French journalist who crashed a K 1600 GT on the way back to Paris after a press launch and in doing so, inadvertently provided the donor machine for this latest creation.Unrecognisable from the award-winning flagship tourer that discerning customers usually buy to ride serious distances on, Fred's latest project makes the most of that amazingly powerful six-cylinder engine that is usually hidden behind fairing panels. But it's one of the most technologically advanced engines out there, which is where assistance with retaining the complex electronics systems was vital, according to BMW Motorrad France Marketing Manager and fellow customiser Sebastien Lorenz."Fred wanted to build an amazing bike with a European engine but because of the massive time and expense involved, it needed someone to buy it afterwards. Once a customer was found and the project got underway, we were able to help by providing the services of one of our electronics experts."The customer (a Belgian businessman) actually gave Fred complete freedom with the build. In fact, apart from occasionally viewing the work in progress in the workshop, the official unveiling on the evening of 25 September at the BMW Motorrad Custom Party in Paris was the first time he got to see it in all its glory. As the covers were lifted the stunning creation was revealed in front of him and a room full of journalists, fellow bike builders and invited guests who had packed into to Ground Control bar on the banks of the River Seine.It was the end of a long journey for Fred, who had first displayed the early workings of Project Nurb at BMW Motorrad Days in Garmisch-Partenkirchen back in July 2013."I only finished it a few days ago, after close to 3,000 hours of work but it's exactly how I envisaged it would turn out," he said. "I'm pleased with the reactions to it - I saw a lot of smiles on the people's faces when the covers were taken off. I took a lot of inspiration for the lines of the bike from the pre-war BMW R 7 prototype. Art Deco is my favourite style - it's simple, easy-to-understand and with good, clear lines - only these lines were a lot more dynamic on the Nurb!"This idea was crossed with an aerodynamic, streamlining style, but it is important to me that the bike is fully rideable too, and that all the technologically-advanced features from BMW can still be used."Indeed, the engine, electronics, transmission and gearbox are largely untouched, but Fred's genius can be seen in the frame, wheels and bodywork that all contribute to the finished look. He's moved the radiators to expose that fantastic engine and re-sited and hidden various components that perform vital functions but are not aesthetically pleasing. The end result is literally mind-blowing - even to the experienced and trained eyes of Head of BMW Motorrad Vehicle Design, Ola Stenegard, who came to the French capital to witness the Nurb's unveiling."I've followed this project online but was still amazed when I saw the finished bike," he said. "This is totally 'next level' work. Fred is a craftsman who really knows his stuff but he always pushes the envelope and brings in these fresh ideas, without being too extreme. He always looks for new challenges and never takes the easy road but as you can see from the reactions here, the finished product is superb. Importantly too, it's a motorcycle that can be ridden - you could take this bike to the salt flats and probably break a record with it."See the Nurb up close at the Intermot in Cologne, from 1-5 October, where it will be on display at the AMD World Championship of Bike Building, taking place at the show.
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