Longevity is difficult in any industry, but when that business relies so heavily on creativity and is seen by many as a luxury, it’s even harder. Only a handful will truly make it their life’s work and for the legend that is Marcus Walz he is in the rarefied air of having been at the top of the game for the last 30 years. But from the Chopper era when his ‘Drag Style’ bikes ruled the roost, to today’s high-end Cafe Racers, what has always set him apart is the sheer quality of the bikes he builds. Now from the WalzWerk headquarters in Germany comes one of his finest motorcycles to date, the cream of his SCHIZZO crop, the fast and flawless BMW GT1.
It’s almost impossible to talk about either Walz or his bikes without using an endless array of superlatives. Three decades in the business and 800 custom bikes later, he’s done it all and never cut a corner. From winning the Biker Build Off in 2006, to crafting machines for Hollywood and Motorsports elite, he’s done it all with the sort of precision that underpins his engineering. A successful racer, parts developer, consultant to the industry’s biggest brands and more recently with the success of his production line of BMW based SCHIZZO builds, he’s always been one step ahead.
“We build around 50 SCHIZZO® Concept Bikes per year, which is 1 bike per week. In our online-production plan you can order your personal bike and you can see when it is ready. The next possible bike is available in June 2022. Beside our ‘Production Bikes’ we build around 3-4 one-offs per year. One of them is this SCHIZZO® GT1, which you can also order regularly via our production plan, but we build only one GT1 per year.” This particular GT1 started life as a 1987 BMW R100 Monolever and features many of the Walz off the shelf parts.
But one of the special additions to the machine is the change from the normal R style of tank that remains on the SCHIZZO bikes. “The fuel tank is a modified Benelli tank with a new tunnel and a small Le Mans Style fuel cap. The tank finished was archived by painting the tank in black, and then sanding it down to the bare metal to save it with a few coats of satin clear coat,” Marcus tells us. Underneath the main frame is re-inforced and weight removed where possible for a lighter and stronger piece. With the subframe being one of the company’s signature bolt-on rear frame kits with a matching cafe racer seat.
Even in the height of the Chopper days, Walz bikes were known to be amongst the best in the braking and handling department, with F1 drivers as customers it was a must. And the GT1 is no different, “The front brakes are our own developed CNC-machined 4-piston brake upgrade kit, to fit all Monolever models. Along with the brake calipers comes a set of bigger floating rotors. Up on the handlebars we have a 15mm Brembo brake master cylinder with fully adjustable CNC-machined lever, the same on the clutch side,” Marcus explains. For the suspension WalzWerk partners up with long time collaborators Touratech for a solution backed by R&D.
“The front end is lowered about 120mm with new internals and progressive fork springs from our long time suspension partner Touratech and our WalzWerk® top yoke and CNC-machined clip-on handlebars. The same for the rear shock, which is specially developed for our SCHIZZO® Concept Bikes.” With the monolever never having come with wire wheels, a custom solution is offered in the Walz online store and makes its way onto the GT1. A set of 3.5“x18“ cross-spoke-wheels are wrapped with Conti Road Attack tyres, 110/80 at the front and 130/80 on the rear.
Looking at the engine you could be forgiven for thinking it’s just a very well cleaned up stock unit, but here Marcus has let his racing background run wild. The full race spec rebuild includes a stretch to 1070cc with titanium rods, racing pistons, a balanced crankshaft, super lightweight flywheel and Sachs racing clutch all packaged in custom lightweight engine cases.
The Carbs stay Bing but are heavily modified to feed the angry new lump, while a fully programmable electronic ignition from Silent Hektik is also on board. “The exhaust is one of our signature exhaust kits, manufactured exclusively for us from our long time exhaust partner SC-Project in Milano, Italy.”
Of course like any WalzWerk bike the accessories are top of the line, Motogadget mini speedo, mini handle bar switches and an m.unit blue are the electronic basics used on almost every build they do. Then you have the Walz own range of parts that includes the footpegs, battery box, number plate bracket and all the little machined pieces that go into making the machine look a million bucks!
Even the fuel lines and spark plug wires run through the engine case for that ultra-clean finish. But the GT1 is more than just a looker, with a genuine 76hp at the rear wheel and a weight of just 163kg filled with fuel, this bike seriously hauls ass, adding to the long line of hardcore builds from Germany’s finest!