Tag Archives: Auction

Premium auctions thrive despite pandemic

Auction houses such as Bonhams have continued to thrive during the pandemic in a virtual way, demonstrating that there are still riders out there with both taste and money!

Two high-end motorcycle dealers tell me the current appetite for premium motorcycles is similar to post 9/11 when people thought “I may as well get the bike I want while I’m still alive!”

It’s a fatalist view, but if it sells bikes and gets people to enjoy themselves, then we’re all for it.

If you’re after a collector’s bike, many of the auction houses are running virtual auctions.

Click here for tips on how to buy at auction.

Currently, the Shannons’ Timed Online Classic sale is running until 3 June 2020 with the headline act a 1960 Harley-Davidson FL Duo Glide that spent 37 years sitting in a shed in Queensland.

Harley Duo GlideHarley Duo Glide

Mecum action

On July 22, the Mecum Indy 200 auction features 25 bikes from the collection of gym/fitness club owner Al Phillips. 

“Phillips’ varied selection of two- and three-wheeled machines will demonstrate that, to him, it didn’t matter what country built it; if Phillips liked a motorcycle, he bought it,” Mecum says.

The British ex-pat moved to the US in the 1960s and raced throughout the US and Canada.

The oldest bike in his collection is a 1937 Moto Guzzi GTS500 with a sidecar, and the newest one is a 1990 Honda GB500.  

1937 Moto Guzzi GTS500 sidecar1937 Moto Guzzi GTS500 sidecar

Others include a 1950 Vincent Comet Series C, 1982 Honda MB5, BSA Gold Star, Norton Atlas, Matchless G15, Ariel Red Hunter 500, Panther 120, AJS Model 16, Ducati Hailwood Replica, Moto Guzzi V1000 outfit, 1979 Honda CBX, 1982 Suzuki Katana and a Harley-Davidson XR1000.

1985 Ducati Hailwood replica1985 Ducati Hailwood replica

Bonhams

Premium auctionsVincent Rapide

In August, This Vincent Rapide, believe to be one of the first Series-A Rapide’s manufactured and possibly the last Vincent-HRD motorcycle to leave the factory in 1959, will headline the Bonhams Summer Stafford Sale.

The rare machine is expected to fetch £190,000 – £220,000 ($A380,000 – $A440,000) at the August 15-16 auction, alongside the 40th International Classic MotorCycle Show (if it is still on!).

It was used as a factory demonstrator, Vincent Director’s mount and a road test star.

Heroes Motors

Harley-Davidson 1972 750 XR1972 XR750

Heroes Motors in Los Angeles also has three drool-worthy classic bikes for sale, not auction.

We particularly like the above 1972 Harley Davidson XR750 racer which is one of only 100 machines built in 1972 and one of 200 built in total.

Every authentic XR750 was hand built in the Harley-Davidson competition shop, and this machine, Serial No. 50, looks like it rolled out of the shop last week. Price is $US55,000.

1971 MV Agusta 750S1971 MV Agusta 750S

This low-mileage MV Agusta 750S is among the most beautiful motorcycles made by the “Ferrari of Motorcycles.”

It was recently restored by Heroes Motors Los Angeles and is priced at $US125,000.

But our pick is this 1972 BSA 500cc GP is in original condition and priced at a comparatively modest $US25,00.

1972 BSA 500 GP1972 BSA 500 GP

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Shed find Duo Glide headlines auction

A 1960 Harley-Davidson FL Duo Glide that spent 37 years sitting in a shed in Queensland headlines Shannons’ Timed Online Classic sale later this month.

The bike is one of seven motorcycles crossing the “virtual auction block” from 20 May to 3 June 2020.

The highest bid lodged by close of bidding on June 3 buys the lot, providing that the bid exceeds its reserve price (if any). All registered bidders can follow the bidding online.

You can arrange a virtual video tour of any specific lot by contact the Melbourne or Sydney auction teams on 13 4646 (Option 6) or via email at [email protected]

Duo GlideHarley Duo Glide

The recommissioned 1960 Harley-Davidson FL Duo Glide is expected to bring $20,000 – $24,000 when offered with ’no reserve’.

The 1960 FL Duo-Glide replaced the Hydra-Glide as the big American touring bike of choice.

It was a major innovation in the history of Harley-Davidson, introducing a number of changes, introducing proper swing-arm with coil-over shocks rear suspension.

Purchased from a deceased estate, the Harley had been the subject of some previous mechanical and cosmetic refurbishment, but a major service was carried out by marque specialists Macksville Motorcycles in preparation for its sale, with recent invoices on file totalling almost $2,500.

The one-owner Velocette Sportsman 500cc solo is one of only 40 Sportsmans made available for Australia.

It was purchased new from Burling & Simmons on Parramatta Road, Auburn, in Easter 1970 and has been cherished by its original Sydney owner ever since.

Well-known in the Velocette community, the bike remained registered in NSW until 2012, when it was deregistered and kept in storage until now.

Still largely original, the Velocette was completely overhauled mechanically in 1994 and is offered for sale for the first time in 50 years, with its odometer showing just 2,983 miles.

It is expected to sell in the $18,000 – $22,000 range.

Bonneville 1961 Triumph T120R Bonneville 650cc

This 1961 Triumph T120R Bonneville 650cc solo is expected to sell with ‘no reserve’ for $15,000 – $18,000.

The T120R remained the most powerful, fastest and desirable bike in Triumph’s catalogue for over a decade, with numerous variants offered for sale along the way.  

Fully restored by a specialist workshop in Melbourne several years ago, this early Pre-Unit T120R Bonneville with corresponding engine and frame numbers dates from early 1961, comes in the correct Sky Blue over Silver Sheen colour combination. 

With its mileage reset to zero at the time of restoration, the bike was showing just 285 miles on its odometer at the time of cataloguing.  

BSABSA M120

There are two restored 500cc Pre-War BSA solos in the online auction – a circa 1935 Model W35-7 and a c1937 M20 – each offered with ‘no reserve’ and expected to sell in the $14,000 – $16,000 range.

Fully restored by its previous owner in West Australia, the 1935 W35-7 has a rebuilt motor and numerous new parts, with the addition of a rare brass trouble light to illuminate its instruments.

With its frame and engine numbers both dating from the first year of the model’s production, the 1937 M20 has been the subject of a fresh ground-up restoration by its current owner. 

The bike features the correct hand gear change, Brooklands silencer and fishtail, genuine Smiths speedo and drum speedo gear and is showing zero miles on its odometer.

The fully-restored 1974 Norton Commando 850 MkIIA comes in black with gold pin-striping on its tank, a black saddle, chrome mudguards and wire wheels.

Norton introduced the 828cc Commando in 1967.

It has been mechanically updated and is expected to sell price for $12,000 – $16,000.

There is also a 1978 Honda CT70 Mini Trial Bike in good operating condition that is being offered with ‘no reserve’ and is expected to bring $3,500 – $4,500.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Electric LiveWire aids pandemic recovery

Harley-Davidson has donated a customised electric LiveWire motorcycle autographed by the Davidson family to be auctioned to raise funds for the United Way Worldwide COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund.

The special edition LiveWire also has custom paint and carbonfibre accessories including screen, tail and tank trim.

It is being auctioned online at bonhams.com with auction fees waived. The auction ends on Tuesday 26 May 2020 at 4pm (EST).

The custom LiveWire is #500 of 500 “First Strike” edition LiveWires.

These are specially numbered versions created to celebrate the first 500 units produced of Harley-Davidson’s first production electric motorcycle.

“The Harley-Davidson design team created the custom paint and graphics on this motorcycle to accentuate the natural forms of the LiveWire,” Bekefy says.

“It’s a stunning motorcycle that is truly one of a kind.”

While the auction is available for participants from around the world, the motorcycle can only be registered and retained in the US.

The winning bidder and their guest will take part in an exclusive delivery experience and “behind-the-scenes” Harley-Davidson tour.

This private, hosted experience will include a tour of the Willie G. Davidson Product Development Centre and an archival tour of the Harley-Davidson Museum.

Harley-Davidson museum in MilwaukeeHarley-Davidson museum in Milwaukee

United Way to recovery

United Way’s mission is to aid those on the frontlines and those who are affected by this crisis around the world.

Harley spokesman Jon Bekefy says the company is a “longtime partner of the United Way”.

“(We are) inspired by their continued resilience in this crisis,” he says.

“Harley-Davidson is honoured to play a small part in the relief effort to inspire our community around the world about the open road ahead.”

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Last Vincent Rapide headlines auction

This Vincent Rapide, believe to be one of the first Series-A Rapide’s manufactured and possibly the last Vincent-HRD motorcycle to leave the factory in 1959, will headline the Bonhams Summer Stafford Sale in August.

It was used as a factory demonstrator, Vincent Director’s mount and a road test star.

The Series-A 998cc twin was evolved in 1936, with the apocryphal tale of the design being conceived as a result of two single-cylinder drawings being overlapped. Production of the model began in 1936 for the 1937 season, and ended when war broke out in 1939. Vincent-HRD’s sales brochure for 1938 described the Rapide:

The performance is electric. Power appears almost limitless, yet it is so smooth and controllable that it is a delight to ride, even in thick traffic. There is only one snag we have discovered in owning a “Rapide.” You never get a scrap with another machine, because no ordinary motor cycle can live with a “Rapide.” Here at last is a performance equal to the fastest T.T. models, coupled with silence, comfort, and tractability. A true Jekyll and Hyde.

With a top speed of 110mph, The Series-A Rapide was the fastest production vehicle when launched. Only 78 examples were manufactured, and approximately 50 examples are believed to survive worldwide.

Registered DUR 142, it was retained by the factory as a demonstrator and for promotional purposes. Accordingly, it was loaned to Motor Cycling in April 1938 to be road tested. The machine was taken to Brooklands for speed tests and was subsequently timed at 102 mph.

RapideDUR 142 Clocked 102mph at Brooklands – Motor Cycling April 1938 (© Mortons Archive)

DUR 142 reappeared in 1955, when Vincent-HRD production ceased, and Motor Cycling covered the sad event by testing the last machine off the line, together with DUR 142 which they described as one of “The First” Series “A”

rapideDecember 1955 ‘The Last of the Vincents’ Motor Cycling road test (© Mortons Archive)

The opportunity seldom arises to obtain a Series-A Rapide. Even rarer still, is the opportunity to acquire one with such historical significance. This particular motorcycle has seen service as a factory demonstrator, Vincent Director’s mount, road test star (twice) and was often photographed as the publicity vehicle for one of the most celebrated British motorcycle marques.

Mark Garside, Bonhams Motorcycle and Motor car Representative for the Northern Counties and Scotland commented:

It is particularly gratifying to bring an historic machine such as DUR 142 back into public notice after over half a century of hibernation. Machines such as this come to market very rarely, and it has taken years of patience to successfully consign this particular motorcycle.

Alongside the Vincent-HRD and the Morbidelli Collection, the Summer Stafford Sale will offer a superb range of pre-war ‘golden era’ British motorcycles, including:

1935 BROUGH SUPERIOR 982CC SS80, estimate £65,000 – 80,000

One of 300 surviving (of 460 produced) Matchless-engined SS80s, so-called due to its guaranteed 80mph top speed in road trim. Offered in excellent condition, having been the subject of a ‘nut and bolt’ restoration by top specialist Dave Clark, and featured in The Classic MotorCycle (Sept 2006 edition).

1927 MATCHLESS 982CC M3/S SPORTS SOLO, estimate £28,000-35,000

Rare and charismatic Vintage-era v-twin sports model, featuring Matchless’ own 982cc 50-degree v-twin engine.

1928 MONTGOMERY 680CC TWIN FIVE, estimate £25,000 – 35,000

Another Vintage-era v-twin rarity, the Montgomery was powered by J A Prestwich’s 680cc side valve v-twin engine, and was a direct competitor to the Brough Superior 5-15, although much rarer today. The Montgomery was professionally restored in the early 2000s, has been used extensively on runs (including pillion), and went on to win the ‘Concours Award’ at the 2004 Banbury Run.

OFFERED DIRECTLY FROM THE ESTATE OF THE LATE LES WILLIAMS

1930 AJS 346CC R7 RACING MOTORCYCLE, estimate £25,000 – 35,000

Les Williams was the famous manager of Triumph’s factory works racing team with numerous victories in the 60s and 70s, and co-creator of ‘Slippery Sam’, winner of five consecutive TT production races. Surprisingly perhaps, his own collection comprised rival British marques – including this 1930 AJS 350cc, ridden to 10th place in the 1930 Manx Grand Prix Junior Race.

Other highlights include:

1916 HARLEY-DAVIDSON 1000CC MODEL J & PACKAGE TRUCK SIDECAR, estimate £ 25,000 – 35,000

This Model J was sold new in 1916 with the Package Truck option, a commercial-load carrier which was a runaway success and would remain in production for 42 years. Fully restored five years ago, this example also has the optional three-speed gearbox and electric lighting system and is offered with an additional Harley-Davidson sports sidecar.

 

1909 MINERVA 3½HP WITH WICKER SIDECAR, estimate £ 25,000 – 35,000

This sublime motorcycle from the premier European manufacturer is offered from an important private collection and is a regular entrant in the world-famous Sunbeam Motorcycle Club Pioneer Run.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Morbidelli collection finally goes to auction

A collection of motorcycles gathered over 40 years by motorcycle manufacturer and Grand Prix boss Giancarlo Morbidelli will be offered for sale at auction on 25-26 April 2020.

The collection was to be sold at the annual Bonhams Autumn Stafford Sale on 18-20 October 2019.

However, the auction was postponed due to a delay in the administrative process concerning the export of the machines.

“All necessary export licences for motorcycles have been requested by Bonhams in accordance with Italian law,” a Bonhams spokeswoman says.

With more than 300 motorcycles, the Morbidelli Collection from Pesaro, Italy, will be the largest single private collection of motorcycles yet offered by Bonhams.

“He spent day and night in the museum,” says his son Guianni. “He had no other life.”

Nieto Morbidelli collection for saleGiancarlo Morbidelli and a Morbidelli V8

Giancarlo’s collection includes international brands such as Harley-Davidson, Honda and Benelli ranging from immaculate restorations to prototypes and barn finds.

They represent the passion of the farmer’s son and former woodworking machinist who, while building up a successful engineering firm as his day job, spent his spare time on tuning, racing and later building his own motorcycles. 

Morbidelli highlights

Two examples from the Morbidelli Grand Prix racing motorcycle collection, largely designed and built by Giancarlo, were fabricated by a small, dedicated team in a corner of the Morbidelli woodworking factory. 

These proved to be ‘giant killers’ seeing off international corporations to claim the 125cc Grand Prix World Championship in three consecutive years: 1975, ‘76 and ‘77, as well as winning the 250cc world title in 1977. 

“He was a genius with bikes,” says Gianni.

“He did everything by himself, working in a very small room. 

“Forty years ago, he laid the foundation of this incredible museum, spending a lot of effort, time, energy and money. 

“One part of the museum is dedicated to the period between the end of the 1960s to the 1980s when he built racing motorcycles. It’s our family heritage, a part of our life, but we thought it would be correct to include in the sale two Morbidelli motorcycles that my father built.”

The 1974 Morbidelli 125cc Grand Prix motorcycle is estimated to fetch up to £120,000 ($A214,500).

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale1974 Morbidelli 125

It was raced by the great Angel Nieto to second place in that year’s Spanish and German Grand Prix.

A 250cc machine designed for 15-time Grand Prix world champion Giacomo Agostini, who rode for the team during its golden period in 1976, and came second at Misano is estimated to fetch up £100,000 ($A179,000).

Nieto Morbidelli collection for saleAgostini’s 1976 Moridelli 250

However, the Morbidelli family will retain ownership of the majority of the Morbidelli Grand Prix motorcycles, including the world championship winning 125cc and 250cc examples, raced respectively by Paoli Pileri, Pierpaolo Bianchi and Lego Mario.

Benelli features

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale1942 Benelli 250 GP supercharged

Not surprisingly, the Morbidelli Museum collection in the sale features a strong showing of Benelli motorcycles which were also a great passion of Giancarlo, coming from Pesaro, where this great historic brand was also founded.  

One of the most interesting examples of the marque on offer is the 1942 250cc supercharged 4-cylinder example that could fetch more than £600,000 ($A1m).

This racing machine never actually raced. It was built just in time for motorcycle racing to be stopped due to the war, while supercharging was banned by the FIM in post-war years.

Giancarlo had a personal relationship and friendship with the Benelli family and so was able to procure the original parts which he rebuilt into a fully-functioning motorcycle.

Other Benellis to be offered include:Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale

  • 1950 Benelli 250cc Grand Prix racing motorcycle – the world championship motorcycle ridden to victory by Dario Ambrosini. Estimate £120,000 – 180,000.
  • 1934 Benelli 175cc Bialbero – believed raced by Dorino Serafini, one of only three in the world. Estimate £40,000 – 60,000.
  • 1964 Benelli 250 Grand Prix racing motorcycle, ridden and signed by two-time world champion Tarquino Provini. Estimate £80,000 – 120,000.

Ducati jewel

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale1964 Ducati 125cc

Another jewel of the Morbidelli Collection is the 1964 Ducati 125cc 4-cylinder Grand Prix racing motorcycle, (estimate £400,000 – 600,000), another GP racing machine which never raced. Created by Fabio Taglioni, Ducati’s chief engineer, this motorcycle disappeared for some years before its engine was found in Russia while its chassis reappeared in Yugoslavia, now Croatia. With the two essential components reunited, Giancarlo rebuilt the mythical motorcycle.

Alongside the pristine restorations, there are several unfinished projects in the sale, offering the opportunity to restore these machines as Giancarlo was hoping to.

The collection also comprises motorcycling memorabilia including Giancarlo’s own reference library, original drawings, trophies, signage and other artefacts, giving a complete picture of the museum and the motorcycling world.  Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Elvis Presley’s Harley golf cart for sale

From 1963 to 1982, Harley-Davidson also made golf carts and the most famous, belonging to Elvis Presley, is now up for grabs.

Harley did some strange things during the AMF years and this is one of the strangest!

Golf cart

The Elvis Harley golf cart is powered by a single-cylinder two-stroke engine but we don’t know the size of this C.C. Rider!

It is among hundreds of Presley memorabilia up for auction in support of the Elvis Presley Foundation.Elvis Presley's Harley-Davidson golf cartElvis Presley's Harley-Davidson golf cart

Elvis wasn’t known as a golfer. He actually used the golf cart he bought in 1967 to get around his extensive Graceland property in Memphis.

Bids are so far $US30,000 (about A43,250) with the reserve not yet met.Elvis Presley's Harley-Davidson golf cart

Elvis Harley

However, it should fetch close to its estimate of up to $US70,000 (more than $US100,000).

Elvis was a bit of a Harley fan owning several models in his lifetime.

Last year, his last motorcycle, a 1972 1200cc FLH Electra Glide, sold for $US800,000 (about $A1.2m), making it the third-most expensive motorcycle sold at auction.

Elvis Presley Harley-Davidson Electra Glide beat

The motorcycle auction record remains with an Australian-owned 1951 Vincent Black Lightning aptly sold on Australia Day 2018.

Jack Ehret set an Australian speed record on the bike which was bought at the Bonham’s annual Las Vegas motorcycle auction for a record $US929,000 ($A1,155,000, €748,500) by an unknown collector.

Jack Ehret's Vincent Black Lightning collection valuable - speed twin beat
Jack Ehret’s Vincent Black Lightning

The new owner has returned the bike to Australia.

The Black Lightning beat the previous motorcycle auction record set by Steve McQueen’s 1915 Cyclone which sold at a 2015 Las Vegas Mecum auction for almost $A1 million.

Steve McQueen's Cyclone valuable beat
Steve McQueen’s Cyclone

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Rare classic motorcycles at Spring Sale

Two very rare classic motorcycles — an RC30 and a Walter Wolf special — are coming up for sale at the Shannons Sydney Spring Auction on 18 November 2019.

The 1989 Honda VFR750R RC30 ‘Homologation Special’ and 1986 Suzuki RG500 ‘Walter Wolf Special Edition’ come from the same private collector.

They are among 11 classic race bikes and on and off-road motorcycles dating from 1943 to 1989 on offer.

Meanwhile, check out our 10 tips for buying at auction.

Honda VFR750R RC30

Honda RC30 rare
Honda RC30

This 1989 Honda VFR750R RC30 was developed as a homologation special for the World Superbike Championship, using cutting edge technology.

It has had just two private owners and is believed to have covered just 17,100km from new.

The RC30’s roots date back to the Honda’s RVF factory racer of 1985 that Australian Wayne Gardner rode to victory in the Suzuka Eight-Hours races of 1985 and 1986 and later scored further Suzuka victories when paired with fellow Aussie legends Mick Doohan and Daryl Beattie respectively in 1991 and 1992.

Costing almost twice the price of a standard 750 sport bike at the time, the RC30 was the Formula 1 racer of motorcycles, with its 360-degree 748cc liquid-cooled four-stroke V4 engine featuring 16-valves, gear-driven double overhead camshafts, titanium conrods, forged alloy pistons and a close-ratio six-speed gearbox. 

The RC30’s current Sydney owner purchased the bike two years ago with 16,350km on its odometer and it is now showing just 17,100km, making this incredibly original Honda RC30 a wonderful collector’s bike at its estimated selling range of $40,000-$45,000.

Rare Walter Wolf Special Edition

SUZUKI RG500 WALTER WOLF rare
Rare Suzuki RG500

The 1986 Suzuki RG500 ‘Walter Wolf Special Edition’ is an original example of the 99 built in the early 1980s to celebrate the  RG500’s success in the Canadian National Pro & Amateur 600 Production Championship, when Walter Wolf was the principal sponsor.

Imported in 2012, the RG500 is one of very few to exist in Australia and is in very original condition.

Its current Sydney enthusiast owner has invested almost $9500 on its mechanical restoration between 2016 and 2018.

Because of its global rarity, Shannons believe the RG500 will be sought-after by international enthusiasts. They are quoting a guiding range of $30,000 – $35,000.

Sale highlights

Other motorcycles on offer at no reserve include:

  • A Pre-Unit Triumph T120R Bonneville fully restored to a high standard by a specialist workshop in Melbourne several years ago. It has 285 miles on the odometer and was recently serviced. It is expected to bring $25,000-$30,000;

    Triumph T120 Bonneville rare
    Triumph T120 Bonneville

  • An unrestored early ‘die-cast’ 1969 Honda CB750 KO with no reserve is expected to fetch up to $20,000;
  • 1972 Laverda 750SF bought by a Sydney fan in 2016 has been restored to a high standard and should fetch more than $15,000. It has matching frame and engine numbers and done just 920km since restoration. It is expected to sell in the $15,000-$20,000 range;

    Laverda 750SF rare
    Laverda 750SF

  • 1943 Malvern Star Autocycle formerly in a museum ($2000-$3000);

    Malvern Star Autocycle rare
    Malvern Star Autocycle

  • Rare British c1948 Excelsior Universal 125cc ($3000-$4000);
  • Circa 1959 BSA Bantam ($4000-$6000);
  • 1949 Matchless G80 500cc ($6000-$8000); and
  • 1961 Matchless G12 CSR ($8,000-$10,000).

Off-roaders on offer include a 1980 Yamaha DT175 Enduro (no reserve $1000-$2000) and two early three wheeler ATVs – 1980 Yamaha YT125G and 1982 Honda 185S. Both are unrestored and offered for sale with no reserve for $1000-$3000.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Pope’s Harley sells for bargain price

A Harley-Davidson signed by Pope Francis has sold at the Bonham’s Autumn Stafford sale in the UK for a bargain at less than half what it was hoped to fetch.

The bike was sold for the bargain price of £42,000 (almost $A80,000) which is a tidy sum that will benefit Catholic Overseas Missions.

However, it’s not as much as was expected with auctioneers tipping the 2016 Custom Cycle “White Unique” would fetch up to $A180,000.

White Unique was created at the suggestion of Dr Thomas Draxler, founder of the Jesus Bikers group in Austria, as a fundraising vehicle, to be donated to the Pontifical Mission Societies (Missio), the official support for Catholic overseas missions.

Pope with holy Harley custom for auction
White Unique

Bavarian-based Harley Davidson dealer, Würzburg Village, supplied the Softail and collaborated with the Jesus Bikers on its customisation.

As the name suggests, the machine is finished in pearlescent white, with Chicano (Mexican American) style detailing, numerous gold-plated components, a Dorne wreath ornament, a sunken cross and Pope Francis’ signature on the tank.

The Harley Davidson was unveiled to the public in Würzburg on 29 June 2019 before being accompanied by the Jesus Bikers to the Vatican, via Assisi, where the ‘Pope Bike’ was handed over to the Vatican at a ceremony with His Holiness in St Peter’s Square on 7 July.

Holy bikes

Pope Harley
Holy Softail

The holy Harley is the latest in a short succession of holy motorcycles and cars donated to the Papacy and sold on for charity.

In 2014, a Harley-Davidson owned by the previous Pope sold at a Paris auction for the “bargain” price of $67,700.

The Harley Heritage Softail was one of two Harleys gifted to Pope Benedict XVI to celebrate Harley-Davidson’s 110th anniversary in 2013.

When he resigned, Pope Benedict was replaced by Pope Francis who decided to sell the bikes for homeless charities in Rome.

Pope Francis with the Harley Dyna expensive motorcycle holy
Pope Francis with the Harley Dyna

The first bike, a Dyna Super Glide, sold for $364,476, while a Harley leather jacket also sold for an astounding $86,829.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Early motorcycle number plate sets record

One of the earliest motorcycle number plates to come to public auction, ‘4’, has sold at auction for $150,000, setting a Victorian record.

The plates sold at the weekend Shannons Motorclassica plate auction and was only tipped to fetch up to $80,000.

There are two because motorcycles used to have a front number plate as well. Some safety Nazis and cops still think they should make a comeback so riders can be detected by front-facing speed cameras.

It was the only motorcycle plate in the auction which fetched $2.4m, including an auction record $181,000 for a “Q1” car plate.

The “4” motorcycle number plate is not the most expensive in Australia. It is believed the 80-year-old NSW “1” plate may have sold for close to $1 million.

That plate was originally owned by Bennett and Wood in 1918. It was bought by Honda’s General Manager in 1935 and spent time on an MV Agusta in the ‘70s and ‘80s.

Personalised motorcycle number plates are big business, but they are not as valuable as car plates.

The Australian record for the most expensive car number plate was set in 2017 at the Shannons Sydney Autumn Auction where “NSW 29” fetched $745,000, beating the previous 2003 record of $689,000 for “NSW 2”.

World record

But that is nothing compared with world record prices.

The world’s most expensive plate is believed to be “25 O” which is on a Ferrari 250 SWB enviously owned by guitar god Eric Clapton.

The plate is now owned by Ferrari deal principal John Collins who paid £518,480 in 2014 and fitted it to his Ferrari 250 SWB.

Number Plate
Veyron with F1 plate

However, that could be eclipsed by British car mod businessman Afzal Kahn who is asking more than £12m for his “F1” plate which is on his Bugatti Veyron.

He has previously turned down an offer of £6 million.

He bought the plate for £440,000 in 2008, setting a UK record.

Show us your personalised motorcycle number plate! Insert a photo with your comments below.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Holy Harley auctioned for charity

A Harley-Davidson signed by Pope Francis is the holy highlight of the Bonham’s Autumn Stafford sale in the UK on 19-20 October 2019.

The 2016 Custom Cycle “White Unique” is estimated to fetch up to $A180,000 when it is offered for sale on 20 October, 2019, with all proceeds to be donated to charity.

White Unique was created at the suggestion of Dr Thomas Draxler, founder of the Jesus Bikers group in Austria, as a fundraising vehicle, to be donated to the Pontifical Mission Societies (Missio), the official support for Catholic overseas missions.

Pope with holy Harley custom for auction
White Unique

Bavarian-based Harley Davidson dealer, Würzburg Village, supplied the Softail and collaborated with the Jesus Bikers on its customisation.

As the name suggests, the machine is finished in pearlescent white, with Chicano (Mexican American) style detailing, numerous gold-plated components, a Dorne wreath ornament, a sunken cross and Pope Francis’ signature on the tank.

The Harley Davidson was unveiled to the public in Würzburg on 29 June 2019 before being accompanied by the Jesus Bikers to the Vatican, via Assisi, where the ‘Pope Bike’ was handed over to the Vatican at a ceremony with His Holiness in St Peter’s Square on 7 July.

Holy bikes

Pope Harley
Holy Softail

The holy Harley is the latest in a short succession of holy motorcycles and cars donated to the Papacy and sold on for charity.

In 2014, a Harley-Davidson owned by the previous Pope sold at a Paris auction for the “bargain” price of $67,700.

The Harley Heritage Softail was one of two Harleys gifted to Pope Benedict XVI to celebrate Harley-Davidson’s 110th anniversary in 2013.

When he resigned, Pope Benedict was replaced by Pope Francis who decided to sell the bikes for homeless charities in Rome.

Pope Francis with the Harley Dyna expensive motorcycle holy
Pope Francis with the Harley Dyna

The first bike, a Dyna Super Glide, sold for $364,476, while a Harley leather jacket also sold for an astounding $86,829.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com