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Maria Motorcycles ’80 XS 650E – ‘Eva’

Posted on June 14, 2012 by Andrew in Brat. 28 comments

Anyone who’s ever attempted a custom bike build will know just how much work a seemingly simple little “tidy-up” can amount to. Something that looks like it’ll take two weeks tops ends up being an 18 month project with more dead ends, u-turns, and detours than a Sunday drive with Stevie Wonder. So imagine the work involved in starting a bike shop “a few months ago” and then going public with not one, not two, but three killer bikes. At very best that’s a bike every three weeks. Now I can’t speak for you guys, but if I had three weeks to build a bike the results would be humble at best. A few rattle cans, and angle grinder – hell, even a custom seat would take that long to throw together. But it seems as if the guys at Maria Motorcycles in Lisbon, Portugal have either worked their asses off these last few months or they’ve invented time travel and brought these bike back from the future. And the real icing on the cake? Both EXIF and little ol’ us are doing features in the same week on their stuff. Take your stinky hats off and give a little nod to Luis Correis and his latest bending of space and time, the beautiful “Eva.”

“The Bike´s name is EVA. It started when one of the guys found an old and very used Yamaha XS650. In Portugal these old models are very rare, so it was a challenge that begun as a personal project. During the process of restoration and re-styling, ideas come together to create a single and unique motorcycle.”

The first part of the build was easy, removing all the dirty and rusty parts. During this process, we took care of all the damage parts, and got new ones. We created several unique parts as well, like the battery box, the headlight and backlight supports and a few other things. We changed the back of the frame to give a more radical look. The Firestone Deluxe tyres gave a good aggressiveness to the wheels.

With the help of some friends that work in this area, the engine was rebuilt from scratch. Managing this was a big motivation boost which let us believe that all the rest was going to be possible. It seems like a new one now! The condition of the motorcycle was very poor and all this took a long time and effort. One of the good part was nowadays you can find all kind of new parts for a XS650.”

The design and the graphics just came out to be a very natural thing, since that’s our professional skills area. Getting the engine started was something tricky do solve. Hours and hours checking all details from the new electrical system. All wires were simplified. With the gel battery behind the seat and all wires and condensers hidden we got a very simple and clean look to the XS.”

The seat was another challenge. It was the best of 4 prototypes. We really knew what we wanted, but it was not simple to get there…!”

“The result is what you see here. We are very pleased with it! Riding it is even better! The sound and the feel is amazing. We have not so much comfort, but the fun is outstanding! During all this learning process we started more 5 motorcycles under the name Maria. Soon you will hear more news about us.”

Those liking what they see here should click on over to Maria’s website here. And fear not, for should anything even remotelt cool roll out of those Lisbon doors of theirs, you’ll see it right here. Promessa.

  • Fanbloodytastic! Thanks for sharing this stunning XS!

  • Tigeeakin

    It is a nice XS.  No offense to the builder but I am so tired / bored of “the brat” look.

  • GuitarSlinger

    Not bad . Not great .. but not bad . But there it is again ! My pet peeve ! That bloody ( literally and figuratively ) Loaf of Stale Bread Saddle/Seat . Ugh ! Enough already . 99% of the time they look like Hell.. a pathetic afterthought ( afterbirth ? ) kitsch … oh lets face it …… Uglier than a Flattened Cow Pie in the middle of the Highway . Come on all Ye Custom Builders ! Drop the Loaf of Bread Syndrome and come up with something that looks as if it took more than a half a second and a beer belch to dream up .

    (I’m kind of with Tigeeakin on the ‘Brat ‘ look thing as well …..) 

    • redrumracer

      isn’t it really just a slimmed down version of the original style seat? 

      the colour may have something in common with the bread loaf but i think it works fine. i’d prefer to see a rear guard sticking out from under it but that’s just me

      • Davidabl2

        At least a vestigial rear fender..

    • BenjaminMorgan

      Ever occurred to you that people might like these seats? Maybe they decide to put em’ on the bike cause its their bloody bike, and their f-ing money!! It might surprise you to learn that the whole worldwide custom bike scene doesn’t really care if you’re tired of looking at something.

    • BenjaminMorgan

      The more I look at this bike the less sense your comment makes! For a start its not even that thin? Not too much slimmer than the stock seat on my Scrambler, which is muchos comfy. But my Scrambler has a bigger tank, and would maybe look daft with this seat. A pathetic afterthought?! Its lines perfectly accentuate the line of the bike if it were any thicker it would look goofy and too chunky, it sits snugly in the frame, its colour ties in beautifully with tank detail, headlight and chain, and it is a nice departure from black. And the pattern suits the bike to a tee. 

      Aside from the fact that nobody gives a damn what you think about the design choices on a bike you will likely never own or ride (just like they likely don’t give a damn about my opinions), instead of calling it “pathetic” why not be constructive and post a pic of a similar build with a seat choice that you do approve of? Wouldn’t that be a bit better? Make for a more rewarding conversation?

      Or maybe put your money where your mouth is and walk into a Portuguese Custom motorbike shop and tell them politely that their seat choice is a “Pathetic afterthought”, I’d personally like to see that.

    • Jade

      Stop posting the same, self absorbed, opinionated comment about every bike with a padded seat.

  • Paddy

    It’s a beautiful build, well done. I don’t mind the seat at all but those damn tires are too big and make the rest of the bike look like a toy. Otherwise, very pretty.

  • revdub

    So clean and pretty. The rear loop looks awesome. The clip-ons, white grips, and white shocks are the icing.

  • md

    FYI… you’re link to still has the Facebook url in it. 

  • Glock22

    my first thought was, “damn, they put beach balloon tires on it.”  Other than that, a nice looking bike!

  • That’s cute. I like it, even the tires. I still like a bump seat, however.

  • Robbie

    Really like it, only thing I’d change would be location of the speedo, maybe tuck it under the bars or something. These style seats are perfectly comfortable as long as you’re not a fat bugger. Why ruin the simplistic, neat lines of a bike with a seat the size of a couch?

  • Russell Lowe

    Nice little bike! The balloon tires do make it look like a toy, which I like. The blacked out mag and tire combination is very cool too. That seat would get pretty filthy if it was my bike … But I agree it’s the right shape and size for the bike.

  • Very pretty bike and I think the seat and rear loop work well. Not sure about the fat tyres but judging by the pics, they look fatter in the profile pic and not as excessive from other angles. Well done, I’d be very happy if I’d built that.

  • arnold

    Looks fabulous. Quick hang it on the wall before any one has to ride it with the clipons and midset pegs.

  • Krylov

    Beautyful. Love the color scheme and the white handle bar grips.
    Great build – well done.

  • cagivarider

    Looks clumsy, inexpedient and uninspired to me… some p.w. would make the cliché perfect.

    Kind regards


  • milesdigby

    My first hit on this bike was THAT IS  JUST ART! I mean what more can you say, if I was  rich I would buy it and put it like a painting in the middle of my living room.Its breathtaking. 

  • Mpress

    very nice bike… BUT from a practical point of view fenders would be an asset in deflecting road debris.

  • XESS650

    Nice bike but saw it already a while back on Return of the Cafe Racers. All the custom bike blogs just seem to be recycling the same material these days! Bikeexif even ran a different Maria build the other week and I’m sure Iron and Air will show this one soon too.

    Sorry to moan but it sucks rading about the same bikes over and over.

    • davmo

      Yes, even more frustrating is submitting an unseen, unpublished bike and having them sit on it for a year, after telling you it will show up here. Guess you have to be a “real bike builder” or have some feel-good story. Maybe my pictures just suck, but it is really hard to see a piece of crap, or 
      a bike where they say that ten people were involved in making it happen get posted while your one-man show just spins its wheels.

      • arnold

        What have you got going on above the cylinder on the frame there davemo?ald

        • davmo

          There is an aluminum oil vapor catch-can and a steering stabilizer, with an oil cooler in front.

          • arnold

             Thanks, hard to tell from pictures, even good ones, what is going on sometimes.ald

  • luSca custom design

    nice job

  • Bud

    Doesn’t look very good to me at all…should have taken more time and money and done it right