Invercargill’s Classic Motorcycle Mecca is set to add another bike, designed and built by Kiwi legend John Britten, to its display.
The Britten Aero-D-Zero is set to be unveiled at the Invercargill museum in time for the Burt Munro Challenge 2023: taking the collection’s display of Britten bikes to a grand total of four.
Britten bike display: even bigger and better
Britten bikes can be seen in a handful of public collections around the world, but each is home to just one of the motorcycles crafted by the Christchurch-born engineer. The Britten Aero-D-Zero will be on loan from a private collector.
Transport World executive director Joc O’Donnell says the Britten Aero-D-Zero will be a magnificent addition to Classic Motorcycle Mecca.
“Invercargill’s love of wheels gives our city a point of difference, and we feel incredibly lucky at Classic Motorcycle Mecca to showcase one of New Zealand’s all-time greats in the motorcycling world thanks to our display of John Britten bikes,” she says.
“John Britten was a creative genius, and he left an indelible mark on motorcycling around the world thanks to his revolutionary engineering and vision.
“His story really is an aspirational one and we were genuinely honoured to have been asked to display this bike in our collection by its owner.”
The Aero-D-Zero represents the beginning of the bikes that made John Britten a star on the world stage.
Back in the mid-1980s, John Britten and his good mate Mike Brosnan decided to build themselves two race bikes: one for each of them. The Aero bikes started out as a styling project, featuring extended aerodynamic fronts with spoilers and avant-garde bodywork. Their design was sleek and slick, with the shape conforming to their riders’ bodies.
Transport World workshop manager Graeme Williams says John Britten’s vision changed the motorcycling world.
“John Britten’s been called the ‘backyard visionary’ and that’s certainly true,” he says. “He was very much a long shot, but he followed his dreams all the way to Daytona. He ended up coming second, up against some of the richest and biggest motorbike manufacturers in the entire world. It’s pretty impressive stuff, and his story still inspires a lot of people. For the team here at Classic Motorcycle Mecca to be able to add another one of his bikes to our collection is just fantastic.”
Joc O’Donnell says the Transport World team is grateful for the assistance of those involved in bringing the Aero-D-Zero south.
“It’s always a pleasure to work with people who are not only incredibly knowledgeable, but are as enthusiastic as we are about giving others the chance to see bikes, like the Britten Aero-D-Zero, for themselves,” she says. “We are incredibly excited to be bringing the Britten Aero-D-Zero bike to our classic motorcycle museum here in Invercargill, and know our visitors will absolutely love it,” she says.
The newly-revamped Britten bike display is expected to be completed in time for the Burt Munro Challenge 2023.