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Custom Yamaha VMAX Pays Tribute to the Pannonia P5

There was a time when we thought that Jakusa Design was only into creating stunning virtual machines that left us gasping for air, but the bike in this story is an entirely different thing. This Yamaha VMAX was transformed into a machine that pays tribute to a historical Hungarian retro bike, the Pannonia P5.
Pannonia P5 tribute VMAX by Jakusa Design 13 photos
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Pannonia is Hungary's national bike and a new brand name that replaced the old Csepel one in an attempt to make the bike more appealing to other European markets. Starting production in Budapest in 1954, the Pannonia factory manufactured nearly one million units during its operational period.

The production was halted in 1975 after the Soviet Union, that had extensive control over the countries in the former Communist block, ordered it shut, as other plans were envisaged for Hungary. However, Pannonia bikes remain a milestone for that era, especially as the bike won the 24-hour Bol d´Or race in 1956.

Now that you got to know a bit of Pannonia's great past, here's Tamas Jakus' reinterpretation of the old-school vibe using a motorcycle that has an equally strong recognition in the modern days, the Yamaha VMAX.

With help from fabricators Life Motors, Jakusa Design managed to mix the two worlds in a motorcycle that spells both the retro glory and the present-day road worthiness. Even though we're not the biggest fans of retro machines, Jakusa's creation is mesmerizing, nevertheless.

Parts sourced from actual old machines were used in the build, and this includes the iconic old-school headlight, with the chicken beak ignition and the single-dial instrumentation. The side covers were also matched to the design of the Pannonia machine, with the three red lines as a herald of the P5 and its racing heritage.

The VMAX engine sits in a Yamaha frame that has been altered a bit to serve the purpose better, and the covers of the rear shocks enhance the retro vibe.

A flat two-seat saddle covered in leather is yet another element that takes us on a trip down memeory lane just like the custom fuel tank that "flattens" the looks even more, keeping a low stance.

The bike, now baptized AGNC Phoenix, was equipped with drag-like handlebars secured in bespoke clamps that also retain the classic low profile while ensuring great maneuverability for the 200 hp beast. LED blinkers are also on the list; minimalist ones, they integrate with the overall attire without shifting focus from the retro vibe.

Finally, we love seeing Tamas ditching the 4-port exhaust system of the VMAX and replacing it with a sportier and lighter 4-into-2 array on the right side of the machine.

Too bad that we will have to wave Yamaha VMAX goodbye, as house Iwata has no plans to make a new Euro 4-compliant powercruiser, nor to re-engineer the current engine.

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