In 1948 the manager of Indian Motorcycles, Ralph Rogers, and the director of Vincent HRD, Philip Vincent, agreed on a joint venture to manufacture and sell a hybridization of their machines to the American market. Two prototypes were created as a result: the better known Vindian – essentially an Indian Chief with Vincent motor, and the Indian-Vincent – essentially a Vincent Rapide with an Indian frame.
Both machines were one-off designs created at Vincent’s factory in Stevenage, England from two Chiefs shipped over from Indian’s Springfield, Massachusetts factory. Unfortunately, neither prototype was put into production before Indian’s demise just a few years later.
The singular Indian-Vincent combined the exceptionally fast and desirable Series C Rapide engine and components with Indian frame and electrics, and employed several distinctions aimed at US riders, such as high handlebars, additional lights, crash bars and converted left-side gearshift. The prototype was personally taken by Phil Vincent later that year to Australia, where it has remained most its life.1
This fully VOC-documented genuine 1949 Indian-Vincent prototype, a one-of-one motorcycle representing two of the greatest names in motorcycling history, will be offered for the first time at public auction. It carries an estimate of $250,000-$300,000. 16 Vincents have also been consigned with the following models of various vintage and specification represented: Comet, Rapide, Black Shadow, Black Prince and Black Knight.Bonhams’ seventh annual Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction will take place Thursday, January 26th at the Rio Hotel & Casino. For more information, visit Bonhams Las Vegas.