Steve McQueen’s Legendary 1931 Harley-Davidson VL Motorcycle And Truck Up For Auction

McQueen1Steve McQueen’s 1931 Harley Davidson VL 74 will be sold to the highest bidder at the inaugural Mecum Celebrity Items Auction July 26-27 celebrating the Legendary History of Hollywood on July 26-27, 2013 at the Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, California. In addition to the motorcycle, several other rare McQueen items will be auctioned including his 1969 Chevrolet C/10 Baja Truck. The two-day extravaganza will feature more than 2,000 artifacts and collectibles from cars to motorcycles to props, from the golden years of Hollywood to present day.

The ’31 Harley was awaiting restoration at McQueen’s private Ventura County warehouse when he was suddenly diagnosed with a rare form of cancer in December 1979. McQueen passed away almost a year later and never saw the bike restored to its former glory. Mike Eisenberg, a McQueen collector and aficionado, took it upon himself to fulfill the movie icon’s vision. Barbara McQueen says her late husband would have been pleased by the end result.

McQueen2“Steve was fanatical about antique motorcycles and we once drove 700 miles on a whim to go see a rare bike,” said McQueen’s widow. “He had an encyclopedic mind when it came to every make and model, and knew the entire history of all his bikes. The Harley was definitely done to Steve’s standards and he would have dug it.”

The bike was built the same year McQueen was born and was the debut of the VL model, a twin-flathead which was one of the most popular touring bikes Harley ever produced. Reliable and sleek for its time, the VL 74 captured the imagination of bikers worldwide and established new standards for the industry.

The Harley was first sold as Lot 601 at the Steve McQueen Estate Auction November 24-25, 1984 at the Imperial Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada. It includes the original engine, body and frame, and the paint reflects a period-correct color combination of red, black and gold. Other noteworthy features include rear wheel brakes, three-speed transmission, single tube muffler, instrument panel, toolbox, front and rear wheel stands, horn and black leather saddle.

The provenance on the classic bike includes an original certificate of authenticity, bill of sale and official odometer mileage statement from the McQueen Estate Auction in November 1984. Mecum Celebrity Items Auction, Barker Hangar: 3021 Airport Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90405-6101or. Info at: 262-275-5050.

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5 Responses to “Steve McQueen’s Legendary 1931 Harley-Davidson VL Motorcycle And Truck Up For Auction”


  1. 1 Rodent Jun 11th, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Steve McQueen had many, many motorcycles so what makes this particular one legendary? Auctioneer hype?

  2. 2 Terence Tory Jun 11th, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    McQueen was known for his love of racing Triumphs,not rolling wrecks.This thing would have sat in the corner covered in dust when he was alive.He never ever rode it? I want see see Elvis’s Zamboni on the auction block someday:that would be something.Or Borat’s Ishmash deluxe.

  3. 3 Mac miss Jun 12th, 2013 at 8:42 pm

    It’s great I hope the nmm can get it so all can see it i. R

  4. 4 Bill Melvin Jun 14th, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    We have a bunch of Steve Mcqueens personally owned items in our auction June 19. Go to our website, http://www.liquidap.com and click on Melvin Motorcycle Museum auction.

  5. 5 nicker Jun 18th, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    This Add belongs in the Wall Street Journal.
    The average Scooter Jockey can only dream of stuff like that.
    Its now exclusive to the world of the well healed “collector.”

    -nicker-

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