Husqvarna's Long Lost Slalom Bike
Designed for the Swedish military in 1968, upgraded for the Stockholm streets in 2017
Even for casual motorcycle enthusiasts the ubiquity of 1960s and 70s Japanese bikes is hard to deny. Sure, a CB450 will still turn heads, but when a vintage oddball like this Swedish-made 1968 Husqvarna 245 comes along, it'll make you rethink your list of lust worthy machines. Now add in the fact that the damn thing has built in skis and was designed for snow, and you’ll never look back.
So what’s the deal? The rare Husqy 245 scrambler was originally developed for the Swedish defense force, though only a 1000 were ever made. Many went home with the young men who fell in love with them during their bout of compulsory service in the early 70s, and thus are extremely hard to find. Custom builder Johan Nordic of Stockholm shop 6/5/4 Motors got his hands on one through a friend who snagged it from an aforementioned old-timer. Lucky him.
The two-stroke engine packs a sizable punch, but the overall bike itself is small, designed nimble for field operations. The bizarre skis are mounted to the frame on springs, so the only way to keep them down is to use your feet—and you guessed it, that makes shifting gears pretty difficult. As such, the design features a right hand side handlebar mounted gear shifter, which further confuse things as the rear brake lever is moved to the left, next to the clutch. It’s confusing as hell, and reportedly even harder to operate. But hey, it sure looks great!
As you may have expected, the original 256 didn’t look this badass. 6/5/4 Motors stripped it down, lopping and looping the rear frame, swapping head and tail lights, adding new fenders, shocks with longer travel, etc. Oh, and a comprehensive black out paint job. Yes, it is entirely badass. In the best of ways.
And if you’re wondering what the “Thage” script on the tank means, it’s a tribute to Johan’s father, who rode one during his time of service in the 70s. Gotta love a sentimental ending.