“Riding a motorcycle for me is a kind of freedom,” said the star of The Matrix and On the Crest of a Wave. Keanu Reeves learned to drive a bike at 22, and it happened thanks to the movies. “I was filming in Germany, at a studio in Munich, and one of the girls had a luxurious Kawasaki Enduro that she rode back and forth. I once asked her to teach me how to drive it. So I started riding my motorcycle around the pavilion. And when I returned to Los Angeles, I bought myself the first bike I saw, very similar to that one,”the actor recalled in an interview with Riderwest. The movie star's motorcycle collection included a variety of models including the Norton Commando, Suzuki GS1100E, Kawasaki KZ 900 and Harley-Davidson. Dyna.
Norton Commando © nortonmotorcycles.com
It was with "Harley" that the history of Arch Motorcycle Company began, created by Keanu Reeves together with the owner of the Los Angeles custom-studio LA County Choprods, Gard Hollinger. In 2006, Reeves decided to install a backrest for the passenger seat on his "iron horse" (in English it is often called the sissy bar, which gives a comprehensive idea of who these seats are for). One of the actor's friends advised him to contact Hollinger's workshop. “Gard just looked at me and said, 'Look, I’m not installing the backrests, but why don’t you come in and see what we’re doing here?” Reeves recalled in an interview with Cycle World … They talked about creating an all-new motorcycle based on the Duna, silver, with thick tires and a curved gas tank like a Bugatti wing, beautiful and suitable for long-distance travel. When the custom bike was ready, the actor was so inspired that he invited Gard to start a motorcycle company.
Harley-Davidson Dyna © harley-davidson.com
The master doubted for a long time, and it took Reeves a lot of effort to convince him. “I really didn't want to do this. We explained to Kean all the reasons why this was not a good idea. In the end, he told me: "Gard, you laid out all the arguments to me why we can't do this. Can you tell me why we can? And that was the beginning," Hollinger recalled in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. They agreed as follows: Gard will develop a design based on Reeves' ideas, and the actor will become the face of the project and will test the finished models. "Keanu is an excellent tester because he can break things that no one else can break," Hollinger joked about this.
Company Arch Motorcycle Company appeared in 2011 in Hawthorne, California, an hour's drive south-west of Los Angeles. How much the founders invested in the development of their first and currently only model, the Arch KRGT-1, is unknown. The only thing Reeves mentioned in an interview with Bloomberg is that they have no outside investors. The name was chosen for a long time: Nemesis, Rival, Enemy … But in the end, the creators simply decided to name the bike in their honor.
The assembly of a motorcycle designed for lonely "careless riders" takes about 200 different parts, made entirely in the company's workshop. The V-twin 2.0-liter 121-horsepower engine propels the bike to over 200 km / h. With its eye-catching design, the KRGT-1 is easy to recognize on the road: low handlebars with short handles, gently curved gas tank, recessed seat, ultra-light carbon wheels, aluminum frame and LED headlight. The model weighs 244 kg - more than the 220 kg Ducati XDiavel S, but less than the Harley-DavidsonV-Rod with its 290 kg. Like any item, the KRGT-1 receives an equal amount of flattering and unflattering reviews. The model is praised for combining the power and dynamism inherent in sports motorcycles with the comfort characteristic of a touring bike, and they express dissatisfaction with its high cost - $ 78 thousand. In comparison, the aforementioned Harley-Davidson V-Rod and Ducati XDiavel S will cost between $ 17 thousand and $ 31, 8 thousand respectively.
However, unlike mass "Harleys", KRGT-1 is a piece product. The exact number of bikes sold is kept secret, but Hollinger said in an interview with Bloomberg that he plans to produce 30 or slightly more units per year in the future. The craftsmen individualize each model, adjusting the gearshift levers, steering wheel height, footpegs and so on for the future owner. The delivery of a finished motorcycle has to wait 90 days. Reeves and Hollinger did not disclose the company's earnings, but as the latter explained to The Wall Street Journal, the Arch Motorcycle Company- not an image project. “We're not here to lose money,” he said succinctly. As for Keanu Reeves, he seems to be very happy with the KRGT-1. “When I rode it, some exclaimed:“This is the most amazing motorcycle I've ever seen!”And it was great, - the actor recalled in an interview with The Red Bulletin. - There was something in it, the world seemed to want such a motorcycle to appear. Sitting on it makes me feel very happy.”>