An MV Agusta Grand Prix motorbike tops the lots at this Bonhams’ auction

69 mean machines roar into this high-octane sale at London’s “Ally Pally” motorcycle show

1973 MV Agusta 497.9cc Grand Prix racing motorcycle, £120,000-£160,000
1973 MV Agusta 497.9cc Grand Prix racing motorcycle, £120,000-£160,000

Bonhams is now the default choice of auction house among enthusiasts wishing to disperse important motorcycle collections, and on Sunday September 23 it will offer a hoard of 69 machines from a single corporate source that could realise in excess of £1.3m.



Taking place at London’s historic Alexandra Palace during the extensive “Ally Pally” motorcycle show (which will feature indoor sprint racing, displays of historic and modern motorcycles, and machines and kit for sale), the auction comprises an eclectic range of bikes from an unused example of the world’s fastest production motorcycle – a 2015 Kawasaki H2R at £16,000 to £20,000 – to a 1955 VéloSoleX moped (£600 to £1,000).



At the core of the collection is a range of important classic race bikes led by a 1973 MV Agusta Grand Prix machine that’s tipped to sell for up to £160,000. The last 500cc, three-cylinder racer to have been built by the celebrated Italian marque, it has been ridden in “parade” events by stars such as Giacomo Agostini and Angel Nieto, although its exact competition history is unknown.

 

Important British-built race bikes include a Beart-Norton Manx 350cc (£50,000 to £70,000) that competed in several events on the Isle of Man during the early1960s and a 1926 Scott TT machine (£30,000 to £40,000) that served as the works entry in that year’s IoM Senior TT, finishing 18th. Estimated to fetch up to £40,000, it will be offered alongside a 1939 Velocette 348cc KTT (£40,000 to £50,000) that raced in the last TT before the war and a brace of AJS 7R 350ccs – the “over-the-counter” race bikes that enjoyed huge success during the 1950s and 1960s – that are expected to sell for up to £30,000 apiece.



Japanese classics also feature large in the sale, with no fewer than four early examples of Honda’s groundbreaking CB750 superbike, which launched in 1969, up for grabs at estimates ranging from £6,000 to £30,000; while a pair of identical Kawasaki Z1s from 1972 with consecutive frame numbers could each attract bids of up to £18,000.



The most valuable road bikes on offer, however, are again from the MV Agusta marque. The first, a 1971 750S, is one of just 402 made; while the second is a 1978 750S America that has clocked a mere 41 miles from new. Each is expected to sell for as much as £100,000.



The sale will also include a selection of off-road machines, six Lambretta scooters from the mod era and, for middle-aged motorcyclists keen to relive their teenaged years, a pair of Yamaha FS1-E “sports” mopeds that combined scaled-down motorcycle looks with once-statutory (and decidedly uncool) bicycle-style pedals.

2015 Kawasaki 998cc H2R, £16,000-£20,000
2015 Kawasaki 998cc H2R, £16,000-£20,000
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1976 Yamaha 49cc FS1-E, £4,000-£5,000
1976 Yamaha 49cc FS1-E, £4,000-£5,000
1969 Honda CB750 “Sand-Cast”, £20,000-£30,000
1969 Honda CB750 “Sand-Cast”, £20,000-£30,000
1972 Kawasaki 903cc Z1, £12,000-£18,000
1972 Kawasaki 903cc Z1, £12,000-£18,000
1978 MV Agusta 750S America, £70,000-£100,000
1978 MV Agusta 750S America, £70,000-£100,000
1960 Lambretta LI150 Rallymaster replica, £4,000-£8,000
1960 Lambretta LI150 Rallymaster replica, £4,000-£8,000
The ex-Harry Lamacraft 1939 Velocette 348cc KTT Mark VIII racing motorcycle, £40,000-£50,000
The ex-Harry Lamacraft 1939 Velocette 348cc KTT Mark VIII racing motorcycle, £40,000-£50,000
The ex-works, J H Welsby, Isle of Man TT, 1926 Scott 498cc TT racing motorcycle, £30,000-£40,000
The ex-works, J H Welsby, Isle of Man TT, 1926 Scott 498cc TT racing motorcycle, £30,000-£40,000
The ex-James Guthrie, Joe Dunphy, Manx Grand Prix, Isle of Man TT 1961 Beart-Norton Manx 350cc racing motorcycle, £50,000-£70,000
The ex-James Guthrie, Joe Dunphy, Manx Grand Prix, Isle of Man TT 1961 Beart-Norton Manx 350cc racing motorcycle, £50,000-£70,000
1955 VéloSoleX 330 V3 49cc moped, £600-£1,000
1955 VéloSoleX 330 V3 49cc moped, £600-£1,000
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