BIKEKINI™ an innovative new product for motorcycle enthusiasts sponsored this years’ bulldog bash in Stratford-upon-Avon held between 7th and 10th August 2014.
BIKEKINI™ is a range of travel motorcycle covers that incorporate unique digitally printed designs offering a choice of pre-printed versions or consumers can add their own text & graphics for an individual bespoke design. A personalized shift from plain bike covers. Created by a group of UK designers, the covers are patent protected in over 100 countries worldwide.
Launched in May this year at the Isle of Man TT festival, where BIKEKINI™ holds a TT license allowing them to be sold as official TT merchandise, the covers have attracted sales from motorcycle manufacturers such as Ducati, motorcycle dealers as far away as New Zealand, racing teams, motorcycle clubs, Harley Owners Groups, charities such as the Joey Dunlop Foundation and individual consumers alike.
Most motorcycle covers get left at home when bikers travel as they are too bulky and heavy to pack. The BIKEKINI™ concept (a bikini for your bike), covers just the essential parts such as the fuel tank, Seats, electrics & switch gear. The sport cover weighs just 150gms and packs down to the size of an apple. Made from arctic grade ripstop® nylon with a soft space film lining, the covers are 100% waterproof, protect the bike from the sun/harmful UV rays on your paintwork & seats and reduce seat temperature by up to -15 degrees on a hot day to stop seats cracking and for personal comfort.
The adventure version is a ¾ cover with campers in mind. As well as being a larger cover it can be converted into a simple shelter using the bike as the frame, you can also attach it between your bike and tent as a windbreak or to offer an additional 18 sqft porch for cooking under and as shaded outside space. As the cover zips on three sides it can also be used as a waterproof sleeping bag outer or emergency space blanket, weighing in at just 350gms, why travel without one?
For racing teams there is an ICECOOL RACE version which incorporates the heat reflective film and a detachable thermal tank pad. This insures that when bikes are fully fueled the fuel stays cooler and does not expand or evaporate, particularly useful when left in Parc Ferme or at scrutinering. The bike can still be steered and mechanicals operated even with the cover in place. Several race teams are now using the covers and technical testing measuring increased performance is ongoing.
We spoke with BIKEKINI™ CEO Rob Taylor (RT):
100% – why sponsor the Bulldog bash (BDB)?
RT – We are a new brand with a new concept and therefore we need to meet face to face with our potential consumers and explain what is unique about our products.. Owners of custom bikes take particular care of them so a travel cover is fairly essential. The relevant aspect about the BDB from a marketing point of view is there is a good cross-mix of bike owners from custom & choppers through Harley Davidsons & trikes and on to sports bikes & adventure bikes. We have products that suit all these motorcycle variants and as our products are fun as well as practical, it’s good to showcase them in a fun and valid environment such as a motorcycle festival or rally.
100% – why would you use a BIKEKINI™ in the UK when it’s never that hot.
RT – Bad weather plays a significant part in degrading your bike over time. Leather seats get saturated and crack as they dry, keeping rain off your switchgear is also a good idea. If you commute and have no covered parking, keeping daylight from your bike preserves the paintwork & plastic. We have customers that simply buy them as seagulls seem to particularly like bikes, but perhaps most importantly, they simply stop people sitting on your bike for trophy photos and we have many horror stories in our research from bikers whom have had hand painted tanks scratched and even bikes knocked over and seriously damaged.
Many bikers want to protect their bikes from dust etc. but still want admire them as they are objects of beauty. That’s more difficult when you throw a sacked shape cover over your bike. The motorcycle showrooms particularly welcome this idea as sold bikes can be left on display to attract further sales, but the new customer’s bike can still be protected from any scratching or damage. Furthermore dealers can add their brand logos and store messages such as finance or insurance deals if they wish.
100% – they look fantastic, do they fade and what about stopping people stealing them.
RT – You can wash the digitally printed versions at 60 degrees and the bespoke nylon print at 30 degrees. They have been UV tested for more than 1,000 hours so fading is not really an issue. If you want to protect your pride & joy and your cover, we supply mini-wire combination locks that secure the covers to your bike.
100% – they sound expensive – what price are they?
RT – An unprinted sport cover starts at £19.99, a printed one £29.99 and the adventure model £39.99.
100% -What did you get up to at the BDB?
RT –The BIKEKINI Chicks™ & Si King from Hairy Bikers performed the custom bikes prize giving ceremony, we also conducted our BIKEKINI Chick™ photo shoot during the festival for our 2015 calendar. We templated quite a few specialized bikes & trikes during the show whom struggle to get regular bike covers to fit, this is part of our bespoke fitting service at festivals. We even made time to take our branded KTM X-Bow race car down the quarter mile strip during the parade, so it was a pretty hectic few days.
100% -What does BIKEKINI ™ have in store for us next?
RT – We will continue to attend & exhibit at bike & trade shows throughout the UK. We have plenty of overseas trade & franchise inquiries to follow up with right now and we have a keen interest to break into the US market in 2015. In terms of brand expansion we get lots of inquiries regarding clothing and T-shirts and as the brand has a great personality we are well positioned to expand into such line extensions
100% – Thanks and good luck with your brand.
BIKEKINI™ Motorcycle Travel Covers – making cool stuff for people in helmets.
For more information visit bikekini.co.uk
Image 1. The BIKEKINI Chicks™ pose with security for the 2015 calendar shoot
Image 2. A selection of digitally printed motorcycle cover designs
Image 3. Si King from Hairy bikers & the Bikekini Chicks present the custom chopper awards
Image 4. The bikekini ‘lingerie version’ on a Zodiac custom Harley