Two recorded keepers from new and single ownership for 50 years
1950 Vincent-HRD 998cc Rapide Series C
Registration no. LXA 525
Frame no. RC7285
Engine no. F10AB/1/5385
Ever since the Series A's arrival in 1937, the Vincent v-twin has been synonymous with design innovation, engineering excellence and superlative high performance. From Rollie Free's capture of the 'world's fastest production motorcycle' record in 1948 on a tuned 'Series B' Black Shadow to the final fully enclosed 'Series D' Black Knight and Black Prince, Philip Vincent's stress on appearance and performance is legendary. His machines bristled with innovative features including adjustable footrests, brake pedal, seat height and gear-change lever. The finish was to a very high standard commensurate with the cost of the machine, which was virtually double that of any of its contemporaries. But above all else it was the v-twin's stupendous performance that captivated motorcyclists, whether they could afford one or not. With a top speed approaching 120mph, and bettering it in the Black Shadow's case, the Vincent v-twin was the fastest road vehicle of its day.
In 1948 the Vincent range began to be up-dated from 'Series B' to 'Series C' specification. The most significant changes made concerned the suspension, there being a revised arrangement at the rear incorporating curved lugs for the seat stays and an hydraulic damper between the spring boxes, while at the front the new models boasted Vincent's own 'Girdraulic' fork: a blade-type girder fitted with twin hydraulic dampers. These advances began to find their way onto production models during 1948 but it would be 1950 before all Vincents left the factory in 'Series C' specification.
This matching-numbers and largely unmolested Rapide has been in the current ownership for more than 50 years. Used only occasionally and dry stored since acquisition in 1962, the machine is described as being in wonderfully original condition with only few deviations from standard. The latter include an up-rated 'Shadow' front brake, heavy duty clutch and original 'Avon' fairing, which has been on the machine since new. Although requiring some sympathetic re-commissioning and the usual safety checks before returning to the road, 'LXA 525' affords prospective bidders the opportunity to acquire a largely original and unmolested, low mileage 'Series C' Rapide, offered from long-term ownership. The machine is offered with Vincent Owners Club certificate of authenticity, old-style logbook, Swansea V5 document, sundry paperwork and a quantity of spares.
- The registration is: LXA 535