Generally speaking, three-wheelers don’t get a favorable reception from you, our MO readers. That being said, check this out. After digging in the vaults just six years, we bring you our 2009 Brudeli Leanster 654L Preview from 2009. While many would call it blasphemy to convert a KTM 690 Supermoto into a trike, we think you’ll agree this is one cool three-wheeler. It leans into turns like the Piaggio MP3, but a flick of the wrist will also kick out the rear – something we’ve always wanted to do with a Can-Am Spyder. For this week’s Church of MO feature, check out what our European contributor, Tor Sagen, had to say about it from his 2008 preview.
Although the Brudeli Leanster 654L is structurally based on the KTM 690 Supermoto, it resembles little else on this earth. It will be revealed next week at the Intermot show in Cologne, Germany, but the story of the Leanster goes back quite a ways.
A prototype known as the Brudeli 625L was first shown at EICMA in Milano back in November 2005 after a number of years in production. The inspiration for the 625L, which was based on a Polaris Trail Blazer ATV, came over ten years ago when inventor Geir Brudeli witnessed an old Swedish army motorbike that utilized skis up front in order to navigate the icy winter terrain.
The 2009 Brudeli Leanster 654L is something quite out of the ordinary and has been created in a manner that accommodates leaning 45 degrees, which is five degrees more than Piaggio’s MP3 scooter. The Brudeli Leanster is no scooter though as it’s been made to lean, wheelie and stop just like a motorcycle – with the addition of one more front wheel!
Brudeli essentially pioneered this field as the Leanster was launched long before the Piaggio MP3 or Harley-Davidson Tri-Glide. The Leanster is powered by a 654cc four-stroke single cylinder powerplant supplied by KTM, as is much of the Leanster.
The high performing single produces 63 horsepower @ 7,000rpm and 48 ft-lbs of torque @ 6,550rpm. The dry weight is a claimed 525 lbs resulting in a claimed top speed of 104mph. Although it may not be the fastest bike around, it sure can be fun according to the inventor and manager of Brudeli Tech., Geir Brudeli.
“Making a 100 meter controlled powerslide at the local dirt track oval is quite an unbeatable feeling, especially when this is a street legal vehicle you actually rode to the track.” says Brudeli. “Then just a few minutes later you could be at a go-kart track without any change at the setup, leaning 45 degrees into corners with a control superior to a normal motorcycle.”
The Leanster suspension is 100% mechanical, leaving the rider in control of an experience unlike any other. The chassis is comprised of a tubular steel frame. Taking a closer look at those two front wheels that make this bike so special, you notice the massive 325mm brake discs with an inside out design and ISR calipers. The tires are 120/70/17 at the front and a 160/60/17 at the back.
The design of the new model has been executed by Atle Stubberud of ‘Soon Design’. Atle Stubberud was also the key designer for the concept model from 2005. Some designers would be intimidated to work on such a project, but Stubberud enjoyed the process a great deal.
“This really was a dream project for a transportation designer, it was similar to a student project where you could start with a really open mind,” says Stubberud.
Brudeli admits that he is looking for potential representation in the US as well as throughout Europe. He plans on having his company serve the market single-handedly but is considering possible dealership solutions. As opposed to the other more docile three-wheeled options, Brudeli is looking to target the true enthusiast – one who isn’t afraid to lean down 45 degrees and get their knees a little dirty.