published at 11.06.2015, 18:12

Surf’s up – it’s time for the BMW "Concept Path 22"

Cool bikes, hot surf spots, inspiring artwork and a laid-back friendly crowd make the Wheels & Waves festival in Biarritz the ideal destination for enthusiasts to experience the motorcycling lifestyle at its most relaxed. The iconic resort in southwest France was also the perfect place for fans to witness the unveiling of a special bike from BMW Motorrad. As the waves rolled in from the Atlantic Ocean, the BMW Concept Path 22 ‘scrambler’ rocked up to rapturous applause from the assembled crowds...

This modern interpretation of the iconic scramblers first seen in the 1950s is the result of a collaboration of some of the most creative minds in the scene. Hence, the influence of artist Ornamental Conifer and surfboard manufacturing company Dyer Brand can be clearly seen on the BMW Concept Path 22 – itself based on the phenomenally successful R nineT platform, designed specifically for customisation.

Playing a key role in bringing these innovative pioneers together was the Southsiders Motorcycle Club that organises the Wheels & Waves festival – and in particular member Vincent Prat – under whose initiative BMW Motorrad invited Ornamental Conifer and Dyer Brand to help collaborate on the design the BMW Concept Path 22. The unique and distinctive BMW scrambler interpretation was presented to Wheels & Waves festival visitors on 11 June, complete with leather jackets designed by Ornamental Conifer and two surf boards created exclusively by Dyer Brand.

The BMW Concept Path 22 is stripped down to the essentials, but with typical scrambler features to allow it to move effortlessly over gravel and sand – such as studded tyres, a large front wheel and slightly extended sprint travel. There are plenty of high-end details such as the stitched leather seat, handles with leather inserts and scrambler-style Akrapovic tailpipes in high-quality stainless steel.

High performance parts by Öhlins and Gilles Tooling, direction indicators integrated in the ‘bar ends, a MotoGadget instrument panel and Bi-Color milled parts created by Roland Sands Design further emphasise the bike's quality detail. The milled aluminium wheels were produced exclusively by BMW Motorrad, rounding off the motorcycle's minimalist appearance. Reduced to the essentials, the BMW Concept Path 22 stands for freedom of thought and its expression, according to Ola Stenegard, Head of BMW Motorrad Vehicle Design.

“With this bike, whatever you like is allowed, as at the Wheels & Waves festival. The Concept Path 22 is based on the BMW R nineT, which we see as the epitome of a custom bike – designed to be modified and customised according to individual preferences. So the idea of a BMW scrambler is not new to us but now seemed like just the right to time to present our interpretation of this legendary bike concept.”

The headlamp pan, fuel tank and mudguards of the BMW Concept Path 22 bear the artwork of Ornamental Conifer, alias Nico Slater, who has been part of Wheels & Waves for a long time and is co-founder of the scene's graphic identity. In addition to his work on vehicles, signs and windows, Nico is well known for his graphic enhancement of leather jackets. He not only created the concept bike's special paint finish but also designed a number of exclusive leather jackets – each one unique.

A particular highlight of the BMW Concept Path 22 is the surfboard holder on the right-hand side. Specially developed by BMW Motorrad, it is made solely of aluminium profiles and leather, and can be adapted to different board sizes. When not required it can be folded away or simply dismounted. The boards for the holder were made by leading shaper Mason Dyer, of Dyer Brand in San Diego. Mason is famous for his custom boards that draw their inspiration from the 1950s and 1960s. The two he has made exclusively for the BMW Motorrad Concept Path 22 are a longboard (9'4) reminiscent of the period when scramblers first emerged; and a shortboard (6'8) which meets the needs of modern surfers.

As for the actual name of the BMW concept bike, "Path 22" refers to an insider secret among Europe's surfing community. It relates to a small track leading to a stretch of beach on the Atlantic coast of southern France. The beach is inaccessible to cars and is half an hour's walk through one of Europe's biggest pine forests. The path leading to this spot bears the number 22.