1938 Nimbus NWX 396P,
Lot 383
1938 Nimbus 750cc Four & Bender Sports Sidecar
Sold for £6,670 (US$ 11,211) inc. premium
Lot Details
1938 Nimbus 750cc Four & Bender Sports Sidecar
Registration no. NWX 396P
Frame no. 4236
Engine no. Sidecar chassis no. A4038
The result of diversification by the Danish vacuum cleaner manufacturer, Fisker & Nnielsen, the Nimbus motorcycle first appeared in 1919. Unusually, only inline four-cylinder models were built. These were of advanced design, using shaft final drive and pressed steel frames right from the start of production, and pioneered the use of the telescopic front fork in the mid-1930s. The early models featured a distinctive tubular spine frame that doubled as the fuel tank, soon gaining the nickname ‘stovepipe’. Motorcycle production was suspended in 1928 to enable the company to concentrate on producing its Nilfisk vacuum cleaners, and when the new Nimbus appeared in 1934 it was with a power unit that showed strong motor-industry influence, being constructed along car lines with integral crankcase/cylinder block in cast iron and a detachable alloy sump. The cast-iron cylinder head was topped by an alloy housing for the single overhead camshaft, the latter being driven by shaft-and-bevel gears. A single-plate clutch transmitted power to the three-speed gearbox. Foot change for the gearbox, a beefier front fork and larger brakes had been added by the end of the 1930s, but from then on the Nimbus changed little until series production was ended in 1954, once again to free up resources for the vacuum cleaner business. A additional few machines were assembled from spares between 1954 and 1959 but none have been made since then. Production was always on a limited scale, but such is the quality of the Nimbus that many remain in service today.

First registered in the UK in 1976 and restored by Nimbus enthusiast Keith Fuller, who acquired it in 1996, this Nimbus is attached to a Danish Bender sports sidecar, forming a handsome and most appropriate combination. The machine was acquired by Peter McManus in October 2002 and is offered with Swansea V5 and V5C registration documents.