Motus closes its doors

Oddball American V4 is no more

Motus ABS prototype

REMEMBER MOTUS? The firm never really appeared on this side of the Atlantic but for the last decade it’s been labouring to make a success of its V4-engined sports-tourers.

The Motus MST and MSTR are, or were, fascinating machines, packing a unique, compact 1,650cc V4 engine that was inspired by the classic Chevrolet small block V8. With 165hp for the MST and 180hp in MSTR form, they were America’s most powerful production bikes, and in just a few weeks’ time the firm intended to reveal an ABS-equipped version (pictured in prototype form) that just might have paved the way for European sales. 

The announcement of the firm’s closure came on the Motus Owner’s Group International Facebook page, where the firm posted the following message:

To all Motus customers, dealers, staff, suppliers, friends,

After an amazing ten year ride, Motus is forced to shut down operations, effective immediately.

This week, Motus' financial backers unexpectedly informed management that they will not provide sufficient capital to maintain operations and grow the business. We were surprised and disappointed, especially because we have been working so hard preparing an October 2018 product launch into a new and exciting segment as well as new features on the MST series. This is very unfortunate timing and we will work to quickly find a new path forward for Motus Motorcycles and our American V4 powertrain division.

We are very grateful to Team Motus, truly the finest group of professionals and people, who have each dedicated so much of their hearts and soul to Motus. We are also thankful to our dealers and the many customers and supporters who have cheered us on and put gas in our tanks along the way.

For Motus owners, hang on to those motorcycles. As you already know, they are heirlooms, unlike any other motorcycles ever built.

Very sincerely,

Lee Conn and Brian Case, founders

Brian Case also posted the above image of the forthcoming ABS-equipped version of the MST, which was due to be officially revealed next month. A naked version of the bike was also under development.

Given the amount of effort that’s gone into Motus over the last few years, and the warm reception that it’s bikes received in the American press, it’s hard to imagine that we won’t hear more on this story in weeks to come. As expensive bikes – the entry-level machine was over $30,000 – they’ve attracted a wealthy fan-base, so surely there’s a chance that a saviour could still be found.