Some of my favorite custom bikes are the ones with engines that seem totally unsuitable for two-wheeler use. Perhaps the best example of this idea is the Millyard Viper V10, a motorcycle that will have you drooling while you shake like a Chihuahua.
The Millyard Viper V10 has been around since 2009 with its creator, Allen Millyard, putting 9,150 miles on the unique build since. And if you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to make something like this work, he’s uploaded a video detailing the maintenance before taking it on an exciting test drive. You will need your headphones for this.
Millyard makes the dream bikes. Over the past two decades, the man has paired some interesting powertrains with bespoke motorcycles. He is perhaps best known for the flying milla boardtracker housing two cylinders of a Pratt and Whitney 1340 radial aircraft engine. We’re talking about a 5-liter V-twin motorcycle that looks like a vintage airplane.
Millyard also built amazing Kawasakis. His 883cc Kawasaki KH500 Millyard Special, for example, takes Kawasaki’s already speedy 500cc two-stroke triple and adds two more cylinders. Or perhaps even more amazingly, Millyard even took two KZ1300 straight-six cylinder blocks and grafted them together. together in a V12.
In 2003, Dodge rolled out the Tomahawk on the Detroit Auto Show floor. Calling it a motorcycle might be overkill as the Tomahawk had a V10 engine from Viper with a seat and four wheels attached to it.
Only one working prototype was built, and nine more were produced as non-working $555,000 Neiman Marcus sculptures.
But that hasn’t stopped the vehicle from catching the eyes and imagination of motorcyclists around the world. Millyard and his son Stephen saw the Tomahawk at the 2004 Goodwood Festival of Speed, and Stephen told Millyard he could do better. And he certainly did.
Like Motorcycle News Remarks, Millyard started by buying an 8-liter Viper V10 from a 1995 Dodge Viper GTS on eBay. Then in July 2007 he kicked off the build, having a rolling chassis by Christmas. By April 2009 it was complete and in an interview with Motorcycle News Millyard said:
“All told, it took about a full year to build,” Allen told MCN. “Really, I did this to beat the Americans at what they do best. They had two attempts to build a Viper motor bike (the Tomahawk and a unique Boss Hoss version) and it’s better than the two.
And unlike the Tomahawk, it’s road legal.
This thing is so beefy and heavy that there were no forks on the market that could handle it, so Millyard made their own. There is also no frame. Instead, a subframe bolts to the front of the engine while a single-sided swingarm mounts to the transmission in the rear. The engine alone weighs 750 pounds and the bike weighs 1,389 pounds in total.
The eight-liter Viper V10 engine produces 500 horsepower in this bike, and Millyard has shown that such power is controllable on two wheels. And while it didn’t hit Millyard’s target of 250 mph, it did hit 207 mph.
Indeed, the maintenance shown in the video above is minor. Before it was ready to pass its MOT inspection, Millyard checked its creation. It needed a few fixes like the light wiring reattached and some air in its rear tire.
It’s great to see and hear that such a great bike is doing so well. The fact that Millyard has covered so many miles is also a testament to his skills. If you haven’t, watch this video till the end and make sure you get your sound.