Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 180
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, including Meadowbrook, Amelia Island and Hilton Head
1938 Brough Superior SS100

Frame no. 1935
Gearbox No. IN 24583
Engine no. BSX-1031

US$ 325,000 - 375,000
£ 260,000 - 300,000
Amended
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head
1938 Brough Superior SS100

Frame no. 1935
Gearbox No. IN 24583
Engine no. BSX-1031

George Brough earned eternal fame with his Brough Superiors, especially the SS100 model, which was his masterpiece. When introduced in 1924, the 'Hundred' was the most beautiful, most expensive, fastest, and most coveted motorcycle in the world, and so it remains to this day. While George was a master of PR, and could certainly blow smoke in the eyes of the press to bolster his reputation, he was also a master stylist, and every motorcycle to emerge from his small Nottingham workshop was guaranteed to be as gorgeous as it was eminently functional. His machines worked; they were built for fast touring (if not outright racing) with 'special for Brough' extra-durable materials inside their engines and gearboxes, which he famously strong-armed out of his suppliers, who it must be acknowledged benefited equally from the association.

The SS100s of the 1920s used racing JAP v-twin engines, which benefited from the development talents of the legendary Bert LeVack, who made them the fastest and most durable high-speed motors available. This was amply proven by their regular appearance as the 'World's Fastest' in the Land Speed Record contests for a decade, between 1927 and '37 - the advent of WW2 -when the titanic battles between George Brough and the 'rest of the world' (read: BMW and Gilera) were both intensely personal for the man, and metaphors for impending conflicts on the global stage. That the engines overseen by LeVack in the 1920s carried on with the record-breaking game into the 1950s, says enough about their potential. LeVack was lured to Motosacoche in 1930, and JAP seemed to lose their edge, although they did design new and theoretically improved powerplants for many years to come. Unfortunately, while still viable for racing, the big JAP v-twins frustrated their road-going customers, as racing had become more specialized, and genuine racing engines less compatible with road use. Thus, while the 1932 'two of everything' JAP 8/80 v-twin should have been the ne plus ultra of SS100 engines, it was sadly under-developed for a luxury roadster, and gave trouble. Brough looked elsewhere, for a more civilized and reliable engine, which he found at the AMC works, with their 'MX' sidevalve and overhead valve engines.

With their 'square' bore and stroke, simple 3-lobe camshafts, robust bearings, excellent oil pump, and fine casting quality, the 'MX' engines returned the reliability Brough needed, although in the bargain the SS80 and SS100 models lost a certain raw excitement, in exchange for very civilized road behavior. The Matchless engines were very smooth, powerful, and reliable, if not quite so aggressive as the JAPs they replaced. George Brough had matured from the young tearaway of the 'Teens and '20s, and opted for reliability and refinement rather than finicky nervousness to complement his speed.

The MX-engine secured the Brough Superior SS100's status as the world's premier luxury motorcycle on its introduction in 1934, having become an ultra-sophisticated grand tourer of peerless styling and a first-class finish, a money-no-object motorcycle for the very rich. Which perfectly defines the SS100's place in motorcycling today, and while the cost of ownership has grown exponentially, the description when new remains the same. Broughs never languished as inexpensive or disposable, and their coveted status among collectors means a high percentage of the 3048 Brough Superiors built have survived.

This 1938 Brough Superior SS100 M1 1935 was delivered on Jan 23, 1938 to Brown Brothers, and subsequently shipped to Australia. It was originally fitted with engine BS/X 1037 and gearbox #19046. The chassis remained in Australia, and at some date the engine was replaced by a 1938 SS100 engine (BS/X 1031, four number earlier than the original), and the gearbox (#24583) was fitted from a 1939 SS80. After a stint on the vintage racing circuit, the bike had a crash, and was comprehensively restored by noted Brough specialists Jack Graham Motorcycles in Sydney. Noted Florida motorcycle collector Jack Wells purchased the machine from the Grahams, and American Brough Superior specialist Vic Olsen spent time making minor improvements to the cosmetics and mechanics. Now Wells notes the Brough is "absolutely gorgeous", a claim bolstered by Concours d'Elegance victories at Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head, Boca Raton, Dania Beach, Riding Into History, etc. The SS100 has all Brough components, and is quite a beauty. Wells continues, "Besides being beautiful, it's a very good rider, and starts easily. If it's been sitting in my mezzanine for 4 or 5 months, I put new gas in and it fires right up. Plenty of Brough collectors have ridden it, and confirmed it's a first-class machine."

Saleroom notices

  • Please note that the correct frame number for this motorcycle is M11935.
Contacts
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
Multiple Concours 'Best of Show' Winner, incl. Meadowbrook, Amelia Island, Hilton Head,1938 Brough Superior SS100 Frame no. 1935Gearbox No. IN 24583 Engine no. BSX-1031
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 Arms & Armor, Coins and Medals, Motor Cars, Motorcycles, Wine & Whisky

27.5% on the first $3,000 of the hammer price;
25% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of $3,000 up to and including $400,000;
20% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of $400,000 up to and including $4,000,000;
and 13.9% of the hammer price of any amounts in excess of $4,000,000.

Payment Notices

Payment for purchases may be made in or by (a) cash, (b) cashier's check or money order, (c) personal check with approved credit drawn on a U.S. bank, (d) wire transfer or other immediate bank transfer, or (e) Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover credit, charge or debit card. Please note that the amount of cash notes and cash equivalents that can be accepted from a given purchaser may be limited.

Shipping Notices

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

Special Car Dealer Notices

For All registrable Motor Cycles, Bonhams is working in conjuction with Nevada dealer Victory Motor Cars, number DLR000041162