Former property of Eddie Lawson, 8 miles from new,1975 Norton 850cc Commando Roadster Frame no. 317998
Lot 345
Former property of Eddie Lawson, 8 miles from new,1975 Norton 850cc Commando Roadster Frame no. 317998
Sold for US$ 21,850 inc. premium
Lot Details
Former property of Eddie Lawson, 8 miles from new
1975 Norton 850cc Commando Roadster
Frame no. 317998
Norton's popular Commando had a fulfilling if all too brief lifespan, during which it scooped Britain's prestigious MCN Machine of the Year five years running, spawned eight different styling variations, and won numerous international Sidecar Motocross Grand Prix. During its lifespan the Commando changed from a free-spinning 750 to a high torque, low revving 850. Along the way Norton Race Dept's brilliant development engineer, Peter Williams, rode a 750 monococque-framed version to a record winning Formula 750 Isle of Man TT victory at an average speed of over 105mph. On the highway, meanwhile, and perhaps most important of all, the unique Isolastic engine mounting system effectively detached the Commando rider – once above 2500rpm, that is – from the Achilles heel of all large capacity British twins—vibration.

The Roadster was launched at the Brighton Show in April 1969, expressly to meet American demand, following the US market's rather lukewarm enthusiasm for the earlier Fastback model. Featuring a slim fuel tank, exposed fork stanchions, upswept mufflers, plus other subtle enhancements, the Roadster's crisp profile perfectly caught the mood, continuing thereafter as Norton's most voluminous seller.

The white tank Roadster was still in its original shipping crate when acquired by Eddie Lawson in 1990. After de-crating only several months ago, he decided the Norton was not a suitable 'come-back' machine! Offered in a believed-never-run condition, showing only 0.7 miles on the odometer, the Commando – which left the Wolverhampton factory in late 1974 – will require a thorough mechanical check before use.

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