“emotion is the essential ingredient of any design”. Shunji Tanaka is formal. For this great japanese designer, father of the lines of the current range of motorcycles from Kawasaki, as well as, there are already thirty years, those of the Mazda MX-5, the appearance of a vehicle is paramount. It must express a feeling, a feeling, a soul.
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It must be said that it comes from very far in the field of motorized two-wheelers. Indeed, Piaggio had created the rondouillarde Vespa (wasp in Italian) to the end of the 1940s, a style sympathetic to “motomobile” that still persists within scooters.
apart from a few attempts to shroud, or cowling, more-or-less successful, especially in the uk, the powered two-wheeler was not treated from the point of view of style. It has long been perceived as a utility vehicle. Where a design inspired by the engineers and mechanics: it was necessary that the engine is well cooled and that its organs (carburetors, clutch) is available. All we chromait or polissait here and there a few items for decorative purposes.
Loved or hated, the bikes “manga” express, however, something
Everything changes at the beginning of the 1970s, when the bike becomes a gear hobby, and also of seduction. In 1968, Honda is launching its famous 750, lines and harmonious proportions, as his great competitor, the Kawasaki 900.
Honda, him again, will post a little later a line of “european” for some of its machines. Suzuki, in the early 1980s, innovates with his Katana and its forms singuières, dictated by the aerodynamics.
The brands of the Old Continent are reacting with a time lag. In 1995, Aprilia fate, however, a 650 designed by Philippe Starck, a renowned designer. Labels japanese re-invent themselves in the 2000’s, drawing inspiration this time from the style “manga”, especially the Seinen, flirting with science fiction and the fantastic.
The Vultus from Honda seems to be the steed of Batman or Darth Vader. Loved or hated, the bikes “manga” express the however something. But the néorétro is now trying a comeback among small and medium-sized automobiles. The bike would now be suffering more from an excess of styles that deficiency. But it is an undeniable diversity of lines and forms.