On January 9th, Bonhams hosted its annual Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction at Bally’s Hotel & Casino to great success, confirming the strength of the international market and reaffirming Bonhams’ position as one of the world’s leading auctioneers of collectors’ motorcycles. To the delight of all in attendance, an historically important 1940 Harley-Davidson EL from the Pierce Family Museum Collection was the subject of an intense bidding war from clients in the room, online and on the phones, and made a new world auction record when, to the applause of the audience, it realized an astounding $159,000.
The highly publicized 1923 Indian Big Chief with Princess Sidecar formerly owned by Steve McQueen and restored for him by famed artist Von Dutch, was the subject of passionate bidding and ultimately won by an American collector for $126,000, setting a new auction record for the model. The same collector also purchased the other iconic Steve McQueen 1935 Indian Chief for $80,500.
Another motorcycle from the Silverman Collection, a stunning and highly desirable 1973 Ducati 750 Super Sport “Green Frame” achieved $137,000, also making a new record, while a rare and race-ready 1954 BMW Rennsport RS54 sold for $126,000 to a private US collector.
The next Bonhams auction to feature motorcycles will be in Paris at the beautiful Grand Palais on February 6th and will feature His Holiness, Pope Francis’ 2013 Harley-Davidson Dyna Super Glide that will be sold for charity. Then, in April, is the world-famous Stafford Motorcycle Sale in England featuring a barn-find 1939 Brough Superior SS100 that has been in single-family ownership since 1961.