1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899

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Lot 201
1927 BMW R42
Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899

US$ 45,000 - 55,000
€ 40,000 - 49,000
Amended
1927 BMW R42

Frame no. 12819
Engine no. 41899

• Recently restored example
• Offered from a private German collection

It was designer Max Fitz, forbidden by treaty from working on aircraft engines following World War I, who came up with the blueprint for BMW motorcycles that the company follows to this day, 90-plus years after that first R32 was produced. In that bike we first saw his now-familiar transverse-mounted 'boxer' motor, its twin cylinders jutting out into the cooling breeze. Also there from the beginning was shaft final drive, as well as the marque's attention to engineering and focus on solid build quality.

But it was the R42, introduced three years later in 1926 that moved the brand more firmly down the road to profitability and success. Its redesigned and more powerful 500cc engine, now with heavily finned detachable alloy heads, made the bike a better tourer. With the engine repositioned in the frame for improved weight distribution, stronger, straighter front downtubes could be employed, sharpening the bike's handling. Braking too came in for attention: Gone was the arcane block-and-pulley type rear brake, replaced by a drum on the driveshaft gripped by external contracting bands. Stylistically, the R32's quaint valanced fenders gave way to simpler, more modern looking sheetmetal. Electric lighting was still regarded as an extra and would not be standardized until 1928. Though all BMWs built up to 1941 owe much to the R42, its production lasted just three years, making this rare Beemer among the brand's most desirable and sought-after vintage machines.

A new restoration from Germany, this second-year R42 is in prime mechanical and cosmetic condition, ready to go trophy-hunting at concours events, or smile-gathering at rallies and rides – or better yet, both!

Saleroom notices

  • The engine number is 11899.
Contacts
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
1927 BMW R42 Frame no. 12819 Engine no. 41899
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