Modern Take ON The BMW R5: RSD’s R nine T Classic

Roland Sands and BMW have had a close relationship, with Roland as one of the first guys to get his hands on the German roadster upon it's release.

He was one of the first to release a line of custom parts for the bike, and his Concept 90 went on to act as the basis for BMW’s new R nineT Racer.

While he’s been a little quiet on the custom BMW front, that all changes now with this beautiful BMW R nineT Classic—a modern take on the 1936 BMW R5.


Fortunately, this R nineT Classic should perform quite a bit better than that original R5. With a GP Suspension rebuilt fork with black powder coated tubes, diamond like coating on the stanchions, and a cartridge kit stuffed inside and a black Ohlins shock out back, the Classic is ready for canyon duty.


RSD swapped the 17 inch front for a 19 inch wheel, and then gave it their own RSD discs with Brembo monobloc calipers and Spiegler lines. Dunlop supplied the tires, with a D208F up front and Q3 for the rear.
The exhaust system is a RSD custom 2-1-2 unit, with RSD velocity stacks replacing the stock airbox.


A large part of the custom framework was outsourced to Sosa Metal Works, who specialize in work seen in the custom framework done around the Classic’s fenders due to Roland’s busy schedule. The rear subframe is all new, as is the custom solo seat.


The only thing that didn’t sit quite right with the RSD team was the tank, which came back a little bigger than they felt fit right with the bike. RSD fabricator Aaron Boss trimmed it down a bit, while keeping Sosa’s shape, though he did add the sight glass windows on the side that might be my favorite part of the bike.


Roland’s R nineT Classic is my favorite of his customs in some time, and I love the real blend of throwback looks and modern performance. Well done my man.






Report by Sean MacDonald for Cycleworld

Photos by Courtesy of Roland Sands Design

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