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‘08 Yamaha Scorpio – Thrive Motorcycles

Posted on June 15, 2015 by Andrew in Other. 38 comments


It’s easy to become jaded working here. Like some biking Roman Emperors, we get all the latest and greatest two-wheeled pleasures lavished upon us on a daily basis. The sweetest cafés, the plumpest brats and the most exotic trackers – all hand peeled and fed to us from a silver platter. Let’s face it, it’d be pretty easy for us to become spoilt. What am I saying? We are spoilt. But just as we find ourselves nodding off into a cool bike-induced coma, this appears in our mail. So, like a proud ruler parading a never-seen-before rhinoceros to a boudoir full of amazed onlookers, we’d like to present to you the ‘Cross’. What is it? It’s Thrive Motorcycles, that’s what.


Quick! Jam their comlink. Center switch!

We were lucky enough to manage a chat with the lads from Jakarta’s Thrive, and we asked them how such an original design came to be. “The bike’s owner is not only a great graphic designer, but also a very good friend,” they said. “We’ve known him for quite a few years, so when he asked us to build him a bike, we pulled out all the stops. In fact, it’s probably our most ambitious and creative build to date.”


Clearly, the Thrive team and the bike’s owner are the kind of people who play well together. For all the crazy functional questions he asked of the team, the end result is a creative form that clearly works not only as a tool but as art, too. “It’s always interesting for us when we meet other people who also have strong visions and big dreams; their creativity really inspires us to build something that’s not only good-looking, but also something with meaning, too.”


“We began to wonder what kind of spirit would live in between such extremes.”

Then while toying of the idea of good and bad and black and white, they had a revelation of sorts. “We began to wonder what kind of spirit would live in between such extremes. We though there must be more than neutrality; maybe the grey area is more mysterious than you could ever imagine? What if it could be really bad and very good at the same time?” The result was a rough sketch that captured the perfect bike for the brief – one that could face the worst of roads without fear yet still look like a poster child for beautiful design to boot.


With such an unusual body in mind, they were quick to realise that most of the original frame would be history. “We started by creating a whole new subframe to achieve a clean look under the seat and to maximise the horizontal grid we were designing to.” Next came time to choose the bike’s main material – in this instance a sheet aluminium that would be used to not only achieve the ‘grey’ they were after, but to also save precious weight.

“The engine was in a good condition when she came though our front door, but a few parts got some new replacements. Next came a good vapour blast and some new gaskets, then we added a PE-28 carb so she could breathe a little more fresh air. We also covered the custom-made stainless steel exhaust with a grey exhaust wrap to match the overall look.”


To ensure decent amounts of off-road control, Thrive sourced a new Rental ‘Fatbar’ handlebar and completed the set-up with a custom clutch and brake lever, a custom dashboard with indicators and a GPS/phone mount, and some custom switch gear. They capped off the ‘bars with bespoke bar-end turn signals to try keep to the overall clean look. Job done, then.

“At the front, we used a set of Honda USD forks, but we had to modify the triple trees and steering column to make it fit perfectly on the Yamaha chassis. For the rear, we used a Yamaha swing arm and paired it with a Showa mono-shock on a custom-made unitrack system.”


“For shoes, we used a pair of 18” spoke rims wrapped with Kenda ‘Trial Tread’ tyres. For stopping, we added a pair of new disc brakes on a set aftermarket trial hubs. We then modified the original foot pegs by adding some details to enhance the grip and paired them with a new chrome shifter and brake pedal.”


Final additions to the build included a custom skid-plate to protect the engine from any off-road nasties while she goes about her business and the rather Spartan paint scheme. “There’s only two main colors on this bike, a gun-metal grey on top of the brushed aluminium panels and black for the rest of the bike. But with that said, we used three different black powdercoat textures to achieve the final look you see here.”


Missiles launch from here. Probably

“As we all know, not everything we make is perfection. But dreaming and experimenting with what we believe in is always a good thing. We feel that the strength of idea will make the bike naturally stand out amongst the competition. We hope the Pipeburn fans will like it as much as we liked making it.”


I, for one, welcome our new 70s robotic overlords


As with all great builds, the bike is sure to divide opinions. We’d be disappointed if it didn’t. Some are sure to see the art, while others will just see it as an exercise in aesthetic eccentricity. But one thing’s for sure – like a rhinoceros in a boudoir, it’s impossible to ignore.

  • John Wanninger

    Knee jerk reaction: Lego motorcycle.

    • That’s high praise in my books.

      • John Wanninger

        I cant wait to show it to my son. He will love it.

        The build quality is awesome. The pipe would be better unwrapped though. As always.

      • Hardley T Whipsnade III

        Not in mine I’m afraid .

    • bjax

      I’d need a Lego butt to stay on it.

  • Gedigedi

    Dude, hell yes! That bike f’ing rules!

  • Here’s their previous build, for comparison:

  • Bultaco Metralla

    What’s not to like. Clean build, great craft and a stunning, original, throw away the book style.

  • Alasdair Sykes

    Big yes from me. Reminds of one of those Star Wars speeder bike things. Stick a couple of blaster cannons on it and I’m sold.

  • yamahappy

    Made me smile. Great ass.

  • think it needs some square wheels

  • revdub

    Thrive never disappoints. This bike is just plain rad. So different than anything else being done and that’s a good thing.

  • methamphetasaur

    This is maximum bizarre. I want one immediately.

  • Lee Scuppers

    I love the image of the rhinoceros in the boudoir, and it seems appropriate for this bike. But I still don’t really understand it.

  • arnold

    A solution in search of a problem.

    The mechanical layout looks good. like the tail light arrangement , very Cad Eldoie. and I’ve been salivating over the headlight /baby spot/numberplate arrangement for quite some time.

    They sure do have a shop theme.

  • Randy Moran

    I really like that. If you only described it to me I’d have probably guessed that I wouldn’t like it, but it really does look cool. Nice work!

  • I can appreciate the design exercise but this thing has the sex appeal of a toaster oven.

    • Gedigedi

      Toaster ovens are sexy.

  • foiled again

    Whether or not I like this is immaterial- I’m just glad it exists.

  • This bike belongs to “Plain Awful” valley, from Carl Bark’s masterpiece “Lost in the Andes”. The cubical inhabitants of the valley would adore it!!!

    I even know the tank emblem that fits this project: a pair of square eggs 😉

  • matlock

    They were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn’t stop to think if they should.

  • Finally, a bike that can be built in Minecraft! Seriously though, I love this for it’s pure individuality.

  • GarbanzoBean

    A perfect example of thinking outside the box and while out there turning 180, look at the box and getting inspired? Why not?!

  • ccc40821

    As the owner of an MZ ES250/2, I tend to notice bikes like this one more than most other people. Really like it too, and judging from the comments below, people are much more positive than negative about it.

  • It’s unique, beautiful, well crafted and designed with a sense of humor. I’d love to ride this just to see the look on people’s faces.

  • cab305

    I dig it! Very Syd Mead.

  • Fast2Furious

    This can only end one way.

    • Alyn Smith

      That looks like a photocopier. And going by my track record with photocopiers and their irrational hatred of me, I would not trust my life to one on the road.

  • Everybody is trying to do something radical, something that has not been seen before. Most of the time it involves randomly throwing existing design elements into a blender and ending up with something that looks exactly like what it is: a bunch of discordant design elements that don’t go together.

    Folks, if you want to do radical, THIS is the way to do radical: take a single theme, push it as far or farther than anybody else has without losing focus, and then build it to a high enough level of craftsmanship that the fabrication doesn’t get in the way of the concept. I would rank this bike up with Speed Shop Design’s “Beezerker” and Foundry Motorcycle’s “The Pipeline” as bikes that made me genuinely rethink how motorcycle bodywork can look. It’s not so much a matter of “I like it,” or “It’s pretty,” it’s more of a case of “You’ve given me a very meaty visual thesis to ruminate on.”

  • Jed

    This is cool.

  • Chris Saddler Sam

    vvveeery interesting! 😉 bravo guys!

  • Darrick B

    At first glance, I didn’t want to like it. But the build quality and attention to detail are too awesome.