Jan 25, 20184796 views

Bandit9 Motorcycles

I first came across Bandit9 a few years ago when they released the EVE motorcycle, It was radically different from anything I had seen before so naturally I had to know more. I did a little digging and managed to get in touch with Daryl Villanueva, the head of Bandit9 and the designer of these beautiful machines.
Daryl was in advertising before breaking away to pursue his art and I am sure glad he did, just look at these bikes! He started Bandit9 in Beijing before moving the company to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam in 2014.
Since first connecting with Daryl he has released a number of new bikes and designs that continue to impress. Each build is limited to 9 bikes.
Some examples of his work:

EVE Classic



The Bishop



The Dark Side

The Odyssey


What do you guys think of these builds? Bandit9 is continually coming out with new and exciting bikes so we will try and keep everyone updated. I am happy to provide more info on any of them, and if there is enough interest we could even list some of his existing bikes for sale on Massdrop.
biotswa, gorian2222, and 42 others

The Odyssey is about as pretty as a Honda Odyssey, the Dark Side looks like everything bad about the Diavel made worse (and the Harley Street engine isn't exactly impressive), the Eden is every 70 something Honda CB that's still kicking, the EVE looks like you're riding an airbrush... The Bishop is the closest thing to likeable I can see, and it looks like it would be horrible to actually ride around on.
If they looked like they had any semblance of ergonomics, maybe I'd give them something of a chance. If they didn't have drum brakes, maybe I'd take them seriously. The 9 bike gimmick works because you're highly unlikely to attract many people that want to ride these things. They're art, not two wheeled fun factories. The little velocity stacks don't say hot rod here, they say, "look at me, I'm pretty."
You don't need a 200HP+ behemoth to be interesting either (though we can definitely talk about the insanity that is the Lightning LS-218). Zero makes electric bikes that are sub 50HP and they're cool as hell. I'd love a crazy little electric supermoto to rip around town on. If you want to promote a drop of any kind for motorcycles, they'd be more interesting than most "custom" builds.
I have to say that although i dont ride, i always wished i had, and now these bikes make that feeling stronger. The points above are mostly valid on both positive and negative. Classic harley and ricebike riders will always have plenty of "that aint me" attitudes. However, from a business model standpoint there are enough people with crazy bike money to consider putting at least a couple of these into production. The assumption is that the quality, performance, service and ease of ride are on par with the aesthetics. Dont go forward until thats true but a worthy goal sir.
You're not too old to start riding.
When's the drop?!
You guys should focus on EV
I can't honestly say any of these look very comfortable to ride. They're definitely motorcycle-as-mechanical-art. But hey, if you can afford to buy a motorcycle as a piece of display art... go for it.
The Bishop looks great. Almost like riding a pistol.
These guys make amazing looking bikes, but unless youre a collector with mad bank, its hard to justify. but then there is the industrial art perspective as well if youre into that too. think ill just keep dreaming about having the cash to spend on these kinds of things (:
I am all in on free enterprise, but really MD there are no North American builders you could have attempted to make a deal with. Especially after the layoffs factory closings in the US. Hint "Harley".... I will admit nice looking designs but not worth the money.
I have worked with a few US based builders before and may feature some in the future, but chose these bikes to feature first because they are polarizing and very interesting to look at. I think Harley's unfortunate decline could be it's own post. As far as value is concerned; art is subjective. A Rembrandt is still just oil paint and canvas, but is worth exactly what someone is willing to pay for it. To that end, the EVE variants may start life as a single cylinder 125cc Honda but the bodies are made by hand and are limited 9 examples in the world so for the right customer 11k shipped to their door is not an unreasonable price. Just my 2cents ..
You are correct value is subjective and to each his own, but something interesting to look for 32,000 K art does not make.
ugh these things are ugly! Sorry, not a fan. A "custom" scooter is still a scooter.... And drum rear brakes?! What do you do with these things? Park it in your living room? How about an all-American bike like the Buell XB that's actually fun to ride and a touch of that custom look. Not to mention, they sell for around $4k these days.
No need to apologize, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. If you really want to see the envelope of form over function pushed to it's limits check out Chicara Nagata, his bikes go for about 500k.
Buy North American built. Plenty of good builders here. Lets stop shipping our money over seas. From Canada my self.
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First off Cirque, my comment was in regards to M/C building. As a matter of fact I went looking for a small American production M/C builder to add to this, but couldn't find them. (looked for 2 hours) Very cool stuff with a similar vibe, but a lot more practical. Unfortunately, maybe they have gone under. I've been riding for over 30 years and know M/C having rid-in just about every shape and description. Was hoping not to get political here, but your comment is highly inaccurate. As of +-1 years ago (don't know now) the greats transference of wealth was occurring in human history!!! and guess where it was all going. At that time a millionaire a week was being produced in China. Unprecedented!!! Yesterday, Harley Davidson announced that it is closing another plant in the U.S.A. and 800 jobs were lost due to declining sales for the last 2 years? As a hobby builder myself, I have bought products from all over the world and can tell you with absolute certainty that 80 % of the products I've bought from China were substandard (compared to North American built produces)and or just plain junk. Not to mention that copies of American made products coming from China are popping up everywhere seriously hurting American companies and unsuspecting buyers. See link: https://www.aeromotiveinc.com/buyer-beware-genuine-aeromotive/. Sooooo, if you want a T.V., sure buy from Japan, they got us licked there. etc, etc...
If Im not even middle class enough to buy a Chinese/Vietnamese made $11,000 art bike, how could I I possibly be wealthy enough to buy all American all the time? You must be doing pretty well for yourself.
$32,000 bucks! No thanks.
Put that money towards a Tuono or Hp4 ahaha :P
They look impossible to ride and silly to boot. The company's still in business though, so what do I know?
motorcycle art for sure. but many builds are just that, so that's not unusual. And b/c it's art, likely would never see the road. But that's ok if you're into that scene. Myself, I prefer to ride as I have for the past 40 years
I love how motorcycles/cars and other things can blur the lines between art and function. Sometimes, the function part is overridden by the artfulness. Having rode m/c for a lot of miles/years, none of these machines look like they would function very well as transportation vehicle. Beautiful, yes, but I bet you couldn't ride them for much over 20 miles before your back or other body parts were screaming. The size of the fuel tanks would limit you to 50 miles before you would have to stop for more gas. I would love to have one, but most likely, it would end up as a static display of beautiful art. Too beautiful to risk damage and too uncomfortable to ride. Massdrop or no, these m/c would be too expensive for me to just use as a object of art. I would need a m/c I could put on 500 miles a day. Just looking at these, I would guess they could never do that.
I have to agree with Duncan, the "Dark Side" is certainly my favorite. And the "Odyssey" just feels too art deco.
Certainly the easiest I can envision myself riding for sure. Though the EDEN actually looks like a lot of fun.
I love the EVE
One 'Dark Side', please. Thx.