It was only a few years ago that we started to uncover the booming custom motorcycle scene in Indonesia, and as we featured one brilliant bike after another, we warned that nobody should sleep on the archipelago state. From the epic event in Yogyakarta that is the Kustomfest show, to the sights and sounds of MotoGP at the Mandalika International Street Circuit, and the endless custom shops dotted across the islands, the Indonesian scene is incredible. So it makes perfect sense that we arrive at this moment where the legends of lubricants at Motul, have teamed up with custom kings Katros Garage, to build a motorcycle for one of the country’s best drift racers. His name is Ziko Harnadi and Atenx and the crew have built him a slick sideways slider from a 2017 Kawasaki ER6.
Andi ‘Atenx’ Akbar is not just the owner of Katros Garage, but is somewhat of a celebrity in Indonesia, with more than a million followers across his various social media platforms. And so popular is he and so good is his work, that the Indonesian president has commissioned him to build multi customs that they’ve ridden together. So teaming up with the 2023 Indonesian Drift Series runner-up, Ziko, was not as daunting as it might have been for others. But unlike the president, Ziko is a relatively new rider, so the Katros team wanted to create an all-surface drift bike for him, that wouldn’t be too daunting until he gets up to speed.
Which shouldn’t take long, if his abilities behind the steering wheel are anything to go by! Atenx tells us how he came to choose the Kawasaki as the donor for such a build, “The ER6 is an underrated motorcycle in Indonesia. But we see it as a challenge. How to make this forgotten bike into an icon.” And it’s a wise choice, the ER6 is a seriously versatile platform, and although the engine was designed to be user-friendly, it has also powered many a rider to success in racing as varied as the Isle of Man TT to the dirt rings of American flat track racing.
As Motul is a major sponsor of Ziko and is now working closely with Atenx, the colour scheme was one of the easier aspects of the design process. As materials and final measurements were being completed, Atenx rolled in an Italian for a little assistance. “Especially for the seat, we measured it from the Ducati Monster Evo 1100. Why? Because the Monster has ergonomics that are quite friendly for Asian’s posture.” Now his team could get to work and the ER6 was stripped back to a bare frame and engine. To form up the rear end, the chassis had to be significantly cut back and all of the brackets and tabs for the original seat cut off.
The new subframe is kept simple and short, and over the top the guys started to shape the tail section, which like the rest of the bodywork is made from 1.2mm plate sheet. The look is a tasty mix of tracker sides, with those all-important number boards, and a swooping rear cowl, that gives the bike an uber-clean appearance. The team also paid particular attention to forming the metal perfectly around the seat junction for a smooth transition. The final touches were to french in an LED taillight strip and to make the underside easy to remove, and serve as the perfect place to store the bike’s electronics.
Now with the front end back on the bike, the fork covers could be made and they do an incredible job at giving the understated stock ER6 a seriously muscular appearance. But it is the fact that the two sides are seamlessly merged together, with an aggressive mask, custom Motul badge and Halogen light, that ensures this is unlike any other learner-legal Kawasaki you’re ever likely to see. The remainder of the bodywork is comprised of the massaged factory tank, a custom belly pan and more metal bent up to perfection to create the front side covers.
The Motul factory hues heavily inspire the colour scheme but with a bold twist, as the red, dark grey and black flow together in both solid form and interconnecting graphics, with the Motul logo itself emblazoned across the bike in white. A number of custom badges and decals of all involved are weaved into the mix and the seat has been finished in a smooth black leather. Atenx knew the wheel and tyre package had to be special, but he wanted to do it in an affordable way that could inspire others. So, the stock rims remain, but have a set of aluminium moon discs fitted, of which the concave design helps to make them look wider than they really are.
These are then wrapped up in the uber-aggressive Shinko E805 dual sport rubber, allowing Ziko to slide on just about any surface he desires. To give the parallel twin some serious bark that absolutely nobody will miss, the guys fabbed up a full stainless steel exhaust system, that collects inside the belly pan, with a carbon-tipped muffler booming into the atmosphere. The turn signal are handled by tiny LEDs and the license plate is axle-mounted to keep things clean.
To finish the build off, Atenx found a set of Yamaha handlebars for the perfect riding position and a new set of mirrors to do away with the huge factory items. Ziko is in love and now has the summer to spin the wheels sideways and Katros Garage is now basking in even more well-earned public attention.
[ Katros Garage ]