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5 Wildest Motorcycles Powered by Car Engines

Mounting a car engine on a motorcycle frame is an outrageous idea that has been successfully implemented numerous times. However, these five models take that idea to a whole new level.
Allen Millyard and his Millyard Viper V10 16 photos
Photo: Allen Millyard via Facebook
Van Veen OCR 1000Van Veen OCR 1000Van Veen OCR 1000Boss Hoss Classic CruserBoss Hoss Classic CruserBoss Hoss Classic CruserDodge TomahawkDodge TomahawkDodge TomahawkMillyard Viper V10Millyard Viper V10Millyard Viper V10Lazareth LM 847Lazareth LM 847Lazareth LM 847
Throughout the decades, many carmakers have used motorcycle engines for smaller and more affordable automobiles.

Though the purpose has always been fundamentally different, several motorcycle manufacturers and/or enthusiasts have gone the other way around, building bikes with car engines.

This gave birth to some of the craziest two-wheel vehicles of all time, like the five examples featured below.

Van Veen OCR 1000

Van Veen OCR 1000
Photo: Catawiki
The OCR 1000 might be the most conventional-looking bike, but since it was powered by a rotary engine initially developed for cars, it deserves a place on this list.

Its story started in 1974 when the Dutch company Van Veen unveiled a prototype at the Cologne motorcycle show in neighboring Germany.

Built on a bespoke frame, this wild superbike was powered by a 996 cc twin-rotor engine capable of delivering 100 hp.

The Wankel motor was initially developed for automobile use by Comotor, a joint venture between NSU and Citroen.

Plagued by reliability issues, the engine never made it into the engine bay of a passenger car, but the rights to its design were purchased by Van Veen, who adapted the twin-rotor for their wild bike.

Unfortunately, the Dutch failed to solve the engine's inherited issues, and since the bike it was mounted on had a prohibitive price tag, the company only managed to sell around 30 examples.

Boss Hoss Classic Cruser

Boss Hoss Classic Cruser
Photo: Boss Hoss
If you're a hardcore fan of Chevy V8s but also an avid rider, this insane cruiser is the bike for you.

Since 1990, Boss Hoss has produced a series of Chevy V8-powered bikes and trikes, with one of its most popular models being the Classic Cruiser.

With a ginormous 80-inch (2,032-mm) wheelbase, this is not your average Harley but an even more imposing motorcycle that you can hear from the neighboring county.

The Classic Cruser is currently available with one of three Chevy V8s. The first is an LS1 rated at 445 hp, the next is a 430-hp 383 Stroker, while the last, most potent, is a 454 small block that makes no less than 563 hp.

Besides the Classic Cruiser, Boss Hoss offers a series of models that come with one of the three abovementioned V8s.

Dodge Tomahawk

Dodge Tomahawk
Photo: Stellantis North America
The Tomahawk started as a lunch break conversation between two Dodge employees, then morphed into a series of sketches that finally made it into a fully functional concept vehicle.

Though calling it a motorcycle is a bit of a stretch, the four-wheeled monstrosity featured handlebars and behaved like a bike.

Unveiled at the 2003 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the Tomahawk blew people's minds with its Dodge Viper-sourced V10 mounted on a humongous frame custom-built from solid pieces of aluminum alloy.

Rated at 500 hp, the engine was theoretically capable of launching the 1,500-pound (680 kg) "Franken-bike" to a top speed of 400 mph (643.7 kph).

However, the laws of physics won over theory during real-life tests, with experienced riders failing to reach 200-mph (320-kph) territory.

Initially a one-off, the Tomahawk was produced in 10 units, as American luxury retailer Neiman Marcus obtained the rights to develop nine non-street-legal companions to the initial concept.

Millyard Viper V10

Millyard Viper V10
Photo: Allen Millyard via Facebook
The Tomahawk was unquestionably insane, but to most motorcycle fans, it was also too much engine and less bike.

British engineer Allen Millyard liked the idea of a V10-powered motorcycle. However, he was one of those fans who weren't sold on the futuristic four-wheel design, so he decided to build a more conventional Viper-engined bike.

Entirely custom-built by the British engineer, the insane Millyard Viper V10 looked like a conventional motorcycle - albeit a stretched one with a humongous, 500-hp 8.0-liter stuffed inside its frame.

Besides focusing on the looks, Millyard ensured his 1,322-pound (600 kg) creation was ridable and extremely fast.

In 2023, he broke the UK Timing Association (UK&ITA) two-up speed record by reaching 183.5 mph (295.31 kph) with a passenger after previously reaching 207 mph (333 kph) while riding the V10-powered bike alone.

Lazareth LM 847

Lazareth LM 847
Photo: Lazareth
The impractical but extremely cool Tomahawk seems to have inspired another insane quad-wheel, car-engined best: the Lazareth LM 847.

Created by French coachbuilders Lazareth, which has made a name for itself for some wild builds, this so-called muscle bike featured a state-of-the-art tilting independent suspension, four-wheel-drive, and last but not least, a Maserati V8.

A 4.7-liter version of the F136 Ferrari-Maserati motor, the unit rated at 470 hp went from the engine bay of a Maserati Quattroporte straight onto the frame of this incredible machine, where it received several modifications, including a bespoke exhaust.

Despite its power, the 882-pound (500 kg) quad-weel muscle bike was limited to a top speed of only 93 mph (150 kph), presumably for safety reasons.

Like the Tomahawk, the LM 847 wasn't just a concept. It was produced in ten examples with a price tag that started at 200,000 euros (about $225,000).
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About the author: Vlad Radu
Vlad Radu profile photo

Vlad's first car was custom coach built: an exotic he made out of wood, cardboard and a borrowed steering wheel at the age of five. Combining his previous experience in writing and car dealership years, his articles focus in depth on special cars of past and present times.
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