How the Lazareth Wazuma Works

The Lazareth Wazuma V8F -- and yes, it's real. See more Exotic Car Pictures.
Courtesy of Lazareth Auto Moto

Lazareth is known (in so far as anyone is really intimate with French exotic motorcycle specialists) for its sleek and sexy, super powerful motorcycles. Photos of Lazareths don't always look real; they sometimes have an otherworldly glow, like a particularly surreal piece of a movie set. Sometimes they are. Lazareths are so distinctive and superhero-worthy that the firm's been tapped to create bikes for a number of different films. The one most talked about is "Babylon A.D.," perhaps because Vin Diesel looks right at home riding or driving just about anything.

So how does such a sweet bike get made? Like many high-end motorcycle designers, Lazareth blurs the line between being a motorcycle builder and a motorcycle customizer. To some, there's no distinction between the two -- and as long as the end result is good (and customers are willing to pay for it), what difference does it make? Builder, customizer...when it comes to a company like Lazareth, the definition would really vary by product. Customizing implies that an existing vehicle is undergoing changes (though they can be quite extensive, involving upgrades to the body and to the mechanical components). Generally, a builder is understood to be creating a whole new vehicle from a pile of parts (the source of those parts doesn't really matter -- they can be off-the-shelf, pulled from other vehicles, or custom engineered and built). And if you're in the market, you're probably already aware that both approaches require deep pockets.

The Wazuma's particularly interesting because it's available in a handful of different configurations, and follows a fairly typical Lazareth formula: A vehicle frame is dolled up with a variety of really expensive and powerful parts. Lazareth isn't known for simplicity, economy or sacrifice. Everything is chosen because it is the best that can be had, and the Wazuma is the latest and most over-the-top example.