The Samurai of ancient Japan wore iconic armor that has inspired legends over the years. Now the armor is inspiring Death Machines of London to create their latest custom motorcycle—the Kenzo.
Names after Kenzo Tada, the Kenzo is considered the “most radical machine to date” by Death Machines of London, and Tada is a fitting namesake. Tada was the first Asian competitor at the Isle of Man Tourist Trophy motorcycle race all the way back in 1930. Death Machines of London didn’t go back quite that far for the bike itself, but they did stroll down the lanes of history to find the bike’s base—a 1977 Honda Gold Wing GL 1000. After finding the base, though, Death Machines of London jumped right back into the future, using 3D printing to create the overlapping, shell-like section of the bike. Even more fitting, the armor look was inspired by famed general Honda Tadakatsu, a samurai warrior who single-handedly defeated 50 enemies in 1570. The shell section houses the bike’s fully rebuilt 1000cc flat four engine.
Samurai armor also inspired the wrapped handlebars, which were done in the traditional Tsukamaki sword wrapping technique. The front light cluster is surrounded by a mirror-polished black “blade.” But perhaps the most stunning detail about the bike is the speedometer. This dial is more than just numbers, featuring an illuminated, translucent dragon cast from an 18th century Japanese jewel box. The bike is finished off in Titanium Samurai paint color with the detailing done in matte black. The head case features an inscribed “Kenzo” in Japanese.
This one-off custom will be up for sale soon and at a reasonable price of $75,000. You can honor your ancestors and follow the samurai way as you speed down the highway on this beauty from Death Machines of London.