1961 Norton Manx
Lot 366
1961 Norton 500cc Manx Racing Motorcycle Frame no. M11 97283 Engine no. 11M 97283
Sold for £29,900 (US$ 49,431) inc. premium
Lot Details
1961 Norton 500cc Manx Racing Motorcycle
Frame no. M11 97283
Engine no. 11M 97283
Dubbed 'Manx Grand Prix' in 1939, what would become the best-known racing motorcycle of all time had become simply 'Manx' when production resumed in 1946. Norton's over-the-counter Manx racers were much as their pre-war counterparts, with single-overhead-camshaft engine, 'square' cylinder head finning, upright gearbox and plunger-suspended 'garden gate' frames. Only the presence of the Roadholder telescopic front fork readily distinguished them from the '39 machines. 1949 brought the first significant change in engine specification, the Manx gaining a double-overhead-camshaft 'head like that enjoyed by the works bikes for many years, but the major development was the arrival of the Featherbed frame for 1951. The works' adoption of the McCandless-designed duplex-loop swinging-arm chassis the previous year had given the Nortons a welcome lease of life in Grand Prix racing, and Geoff Duke duly took both the 350 and 500cc world titles in 1951. The cycle parts remained essentially unchanged from then on, apart from the adoption of a double-sided, twin-leading-shoe front brake for 1962. Manx engine development though, continued steadily, latterly under Doug Hele's direction, until production ceased at the end of '62, among the most significant design changes being the adoption of 'square' bore and stroke dimensions for 1954 and coarser-pitch bevel teeth in 1957.

The vicissitudes of racing being what they are – crashes, blow-ups, rebuilds, component swaps, etc – it is not at all surprising that so many old racing motorcycles no longer have their original engines, which makes this 'matching-numbers' Manx something of a rarity. Sadly, nothing is known of its history apart from its factory record, which reveals that it was tested by 'Meads' and despatched to Norton agents, Middleton of Ripley. The machine was rebuilt by Frank Kay circa 2004/2005 and is described as in generally good condition, having been started and run only last month. There are no documents with this Lot.
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Contacts
  1. Nicholas Biebuyck
    Auction Administration - Motorcycles
    Bonhams
    Work
    Suite 2001, One Pacific Place
    Hong Kong
    Work +852 2918 4321
    FaxFax: +852 2918 4320
  2. James Stensel
    Specialist - Motorcycles
    Bonhams
    Work
    101 New Bond Street
    London, United Kingdom W1S 1SR
    Work +44 20 8963 2818
    FaxFax: +44 20 8963 2801
  3. Ben Walker
    Specialist - Motorcycles
    Bonhams
    Work
    101 New Bond Street
    London, United Kingdom W1S 1SR
    Work +44 20 8963 2819
    FaxFax: +44 20 8963 2801