Beauty and Timelessness Meets Function
BMW R75/5 c.1972
BMW R62 c.1928
Although classic simplicity is not a new thing, it's a style and aesthetic that's covertly stood the test of time, in fact almost a century in the case of BMW Motorcycles! This simple aesthetic still exists in most people's minds, ours included, as such a solid thought. None of the thinking of the early Triumph motorcycles are around in any solid form. It's a timeless classic because of the sound thinking and approach behind it's design, form follows function, a tenant of the Bauhaus aesthetic, while managing to be incredibly beautiful, something can be beautiful simply because of it's functional qualities. It's not about making the outside thing pretty, it's about making the soul pretty. The true beauty arrives from it's functional nature.
At the root of the Bauhaus aesthtic was Occam's Razor, an engineering and deisgn principal that espoused the act of cutting away that which doesn't function or what's not absolutely essential to the perfect functioning of the piece. It's about editing, not about adding, a reduction, having the idea of 'motorcycle' in your head and then reducing. To this day a model exists with 2 horizontally opposed cylinders, two wheels and a drive shaft, the R1200R, although computer technology and emmissions regulations have added a burden to it's simplicity, the original idea is still there.
The BMW R62 you see above was brought to the USA from Munich after 30 yrs of being hidden under a canvas tarp in the back of a repair shop, treasured like aging wine. The first attempt after uncovering it got it running again and functional. Consider other things of the time period, the Titanic! Think steamdriven archaic practice, there are no more steam driven luxury liners plying the seas but there's still BMW motorcycles, quietly whispering down the interstate…
The orginal owner of the BMW R62 felt the need to attach a medallion of St. Christopher, the patron saint of travellers, to the front fender. Although I'm sure with further experience of his new purchase, like Occam, he would have found the medallion was an unneccessary addition, as the bike itself was a guardian Saint of travellers.