HomeThe MarketMotorcycles starring in Bonhams’ Vegas auction include British royalty

Motorcycles starring in Bonhams’ Vegas auction include British royalty


Scottsdale/Phoenix, Arizona, and Kissimmee, Florida, are the focal points for the collector car community in January, but not to be overlooked are the vintage motorcycle auctions in Las Vegas by Bonhams and Mecum.

The popularity of vintage bikes is growing, and not just among longtime riders and collectors. The bikes can be gorgeous works of mechanical art with all their bits exposed to view, plus they are smaller in both footprint and price point than collector cars, meaning that for the cost of, say, one classic muscle car, you might be able to buy two or three vintage motorcycles and store them in the same square footage in your garage.

Motorcycles starring in Bonhams’ Las Vegas auction include British royalty
Some of the bikes on the Mecum Auctions’ docket for its Las Vegas motorcycle sale | Larry Edsall photo

At its recent inaugural Las Vegas collector car sale, Mecum displayed several of the motorcycles that will be on its docket January 23-27 at the South Point hotel. Bonhams has released some of the featured motorcycles that will be offered at its 8th annual Las Vegas auction, which again will be held at the Rio hotel, in 2018 on January 25.

Bonhams previously announced that a 1951 Vincent Black Lightning owned and ridden to Australian speed records by Jack Ehret would be on its Las Vegas docket. Joining that machine, the auction house said, will be a 1950 Rapide Series C Touring model, one of only 76 produced.

Yet another Vincent, a 1950 Black Shadow Series C, also is on the docket, the company said in its news release. The auction also will include another acclaimed British bike, a 1926 Brough Superior SS80.

Several Italian machines will be featured, including a 1975 MV Agusta 750S America autographed by John Surtees, while the Silverman Museum Racing Collection is consigning four motorcycles — a 1954 Ducati 125 Marianna Sport, a 1955 Ceccato Corsa 75 SOHC, a mid-’50s Ducati 100 Gran Sport and a 1958 Ducati 125 Grand Prix racer.

Motorcycles starring in Bonhams’ Las Vegas auction include British royalty
1938 Harley Knucklehead

Heading the American-made motorcycles is a 1938 Harley-Davidson EL Knucklehead in original and running condition that was purchased by the consignor from the son of the original owner.

“With the interest in Knuckleheads having exploded recently, this time-warp motorcycle is sure to bring strong interest,” Bonhams said in its announcement.


Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


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