British company offers commemorative McQueen motorcycle
December 20th, 2008
There are a handful of celebrity motorcycle enthusiasts who have that indefinable coolness and incredible passion to make them admired by riders everywhere.
One of those celebrities is an actor many feel was taken before his time, but his passion for life as well as anything to do with speed or excitement lived on beyond his life. So it wasn't surprising to learn that Metisse are selling replicas of a motorcycle created by Steve McQueen, being built-to-order by the small manufacturer in Oxfordshire, England.
According to reports from the BBC, in an effort to re-launch the classic British motorcycle company, Metisse is selling replicas recreating Steve McQueen's customized off-road Desert Racer he rode competitively in the mid-1960's. The actor had built the bike using a Desert Racer Metisse frame and in a limited edition run of 300 replica's, the motorcycles feature the actors signature as well as an additional piece of riding history.
Not only did Steve McQueen play hard-hitting characters on the big screen but when away from the set he could be found strapped into a high performance car racing around a track or in the saddle pushing the motorcycle to its limits. In a recent British poll participants voted Steve McQueen as the best known celebrity they considered synonymous with the motorcycle.
Steve McQueen worked and rode his Desert Racer alongside friend and professional colleague, Bud Ekin the stuntman probably most famous for the motorcycle jump featured on the World War 2 movie, 'The Great Escape'. Completing many of Steve McQueen's movie stunts Bud Ekin, who is included in the Motorcycle Hall of Fame passed away last year.
The hand built motorcycles are produced by four workers at the original factory and the McQueen commemorative edition was seen as a way to increase demand for Métisse. According the companies website the number of orders for the limited editions have overwhelmed the factory and are currently not accepting orders for a short time to handle the volume of work.
Métisse hopes to expand their facilities and increase the number of staff to handle the demand.
Many racing enthusiasts have looked to the small manufacturers motorcycles for decades and the company is able to authenticate genuine Métisse products from the past through the extensive factory records they hold from when the bike was created, right back to the 1960’s.
This is the 66th commissioned McQueen motorcycle, its priced at 12,999 British pounds ($19,633) and are planning to launch it to the global market in January.
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