Reborn Yamaha XV750 Virago Is the Classic Cafe Racer of Your Wildest Dreams

Yamaha XV750 Virago 8 photos
Photo: Return of the Cafe Racers
Yamaha XV750 ViragoYamaha XV750 ViragoYamaha XV750 ViragoYamaha XV750 ViragoYamaha XV750 ViragoYamaha XV750 ViragoYamaha XV750 Virago
Jean-Pierre Lagarde is one talented individual, and this surreal piece of moto artwork is testament to that claim.
Back in the day, Yamaha’s XV750 Virago was a genuine showstopper among cruisers of all shapes and sizes. A 1982 model from the Japanese manufacturer’s lineup is powered by a wicked SOHC V-twin engine that houses four valves and a generous displacement of 748cc.

The air-cooled fiend is fully capable of producing up to 55 untamed horses at 7,000 revs, while a respectable torque output of no less than 48 pound-feet (65 Nm) is accomplished at approximately 5,750 rpm. A five-speed gearbox hands the mill’s force over to the rear 16-inch wheel by means of a shaft final drive.

Ultimately, this state of affairs allows the Virago to run the quarter-mile in 13.8 seconds at 93 mph (150 kph). The machine’s top speed is rated at a respectable 111 mph (178 kph). Stopping power is taken good care of by a single 298-mm disc and a two-piston caliper at the front, along with a drum setup at the rear. Given its juicy characteristics, it’s no wonder this beast became a hot pick for moto artists seeking to create a bespoke masterpiece.

Yamaha XV750 Virago
Photo: Return of the Cafe Racers
One such entity is the work of a gifted Frenchman named Jean-Pierre Lagarde, and the final result demonstrates this fellow’s outstanding abilities. For starters, the craftsman teamed up with FCR Original to have the bike’s standard subframe replaced by a custom loop-style counterpart, wearing a dual-function LED lighting strip.

Within the new tail section, you will find the XV750’s relocated lithium-ion battery, while a handsome Tuffside saddle has been installed atop the seat pan. As soon as work on the rear end was completed, Lagarde transplanted a Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R’s inverted forks and Tokico brake rotors onto his one-off gem to improve handling by a significant margin.

Next, the stock hoops were discarded to make room for a pair of laced alternatives, with a diameter of 18 inches up front and 17 inches on the opposite end. Their rims are hugged tightly by top-shelf Bridgestone Battlax BT45 tires for ample grip on the tarmac. In the powertrain department, the Virago received a stealthy two-into-one exhaust system from Mac Performance, topped with an aftermarket muffler.

Yamaha XV750 Virago
Photo: Return of the Cafe Racers
At the other end of the combustion cycle, the fresh exhaust is appropriately complemented by K&N air filters sitting on re-tuned carbs. Jean-Pierre continued the wizardry by equipping a tasteful selection of custom items to give this creature a personality of its own. Those include clip-on handlebars adorned with bar-end mirrors, as well as a T&T gauge cluster and a round headlight unit joined by a set of minute turn signals.

After removing the XV750’s factory gas chamber, the following step consisted of outsourcing an RD350’s fuel tank to bring about a level bone line in typical cafe racer fashion. Last but not least, the pros over at Design Bike were tasked with enveloping the bodywork in a candy red base, accompanied by an assortment of classy gold decals that manage to look the business.

We totally dig this unique piece of two-wheeled machinery and we bet you do, too! To say that we’re aching to see more bespoke magic from the project's mastermind would be an understatement.
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About the author: Silvian Secara
Silvian Secara profile photo

A bit of an artist himself, Silvian sees two- and four-wheeled machines as a form of art, especially restomods and custom rides. Oh, and if you come across a cafe racer article on our website, it’s most likely his doing.
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