1950 Gilera 499cc Saturno Competizione Frame no. 26278 Engine no. 26278

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Lot 618N
1950 Gilera 499cc Saturno Competizione
Frame no. 26278 Engine no. 26278

£ 14,000 - 18,000
US$ 18,000 - 23,000
To be sold without reserve
Amended
1950 Gilera 499cc Saturno Competizione
Frame no. 26278
Engine no. 26278
• Rare competition version
• Delivered new to Romania
• Restored by a specialist

The best known and most successful large-capacity Gilera roadster of the immediate post-WW2 period was the 500cc Saturno. First seen in 1940 in competition guise, the Saturno - a 499cc, overhead-valve, four-stroke single - did not enter production until 1946 when it appeared with the horizontally-sprung, friction-damped, swinging-arm rear suspension first seen on the pre-war blown 'four' racer. In the late 1940s the factory built a limited number of Competizione versions of the Saturno for sale to privateers, and this model resulted in the more highly developed San Remo racer that featured a more powerful engine, a blade-type girder fork, and a full-width front hub. Ridden by major stars of the day, the San Remo established an enviable competition record, proving capable of beating multi-cylinder rivals around tighter circuits on numerous occasions. The design's next development, the Corsa, arrived in 1951 boasting a revised engine with increased finning and a larger sump. A telescopic front fork and conventional hydraulically damped rear shock absorbers made their first appearance on this model, giving rise to the name Piuma (feather) because of the ease of handling these advances brought with them. Major changes to the Turismo and Sport roadsters were mainly confined to the cycle parts, which were updated with a telescopic front fork and full-width alloy front brake for 1951, and conventional coil-sprung dampers at the rear soon after. Production of the Saturno roadsters continued until 1959, their passing marking the end of the line for one of Italy's truly great classic motorcycles.

Copies of factory despatch records on file show that Saturno Competizione number '26278' was delivered new to Bucharest, Romania from where it was purchased in 1991. Raced by a privateer and restored by a specialist, the machine also comes with copies of other documents (in Italian) and an original parts catalogue.

Footnotes

  • As with all Lots in the Sale, this Lot is sold 'as is/where is' and Bidders must satisfy themselves as to the provenance, condition, age, completeness and originality prior to bidding.

Saleroom notices

  • Please click the link to view the walkaround video of Lot 618: click here
Contacts
1950 Gilera 499cc Saturno Competizione Frame no. 26278 Engine no. 26278
1950 Gilera 499cc Saturno Competizione Frame no. 26278 Engine no. 26278
Auction information

LIVE AND ONLINE AUCTION
Please note that whilst viewing is available by appointment, the auction itself will be conducted from a remote saleroom, behind closed doors without public access, in accordance with the current government guidelines.

Bidding Notices

VIEWING
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Please email: [email protected] with your preferred date, time and vehicle registration number or call +44 (0) 20 8963 2817 to book an appointment.

VIEWING TIMES
Wednesday 12 August 1pm to 5pm
Thursday 13 August 9am to 5pm
Friday 14 August 9am to 5pm
Saturday 15 August 9am to 5pm (Lots 501-704 only)

SALE TIMES
Friday 14 August Spares & Memorabilia (Lot 1 - 212) 10am
Saturday 15 August Motorcycles (Lot 301 - 462) 10am
Sunday 16 August Motorcycles (Morbidelli) (Lot 501 - 704) 10am

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Buyers' Obligations

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Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories, buyer's premium excluding Cars, Motorbikes, Wine, Whisky and Coin & Medal sales, will be as follows:

Buyer's Premium Rates
27.5% on the first £2,500 of the hammer price;
25% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £2,500 up to and including £300,000;
20% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £300,000 up to and including £3,000,000;
and 13.9% of the hammer price of any amounts in excess of £3,000,000.

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

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Lot symbols
N NOVA declaration

If purchased by a UK resident, this machine is subject to a NOVA declaration, undertaken by Bonhams upon a successful sale, to facilitate the registration of the machine here in the UK.