Bonhams £2.2m Stafford Motorcycles auction realizes world record price

A 1934 Brough Superior 996cc SS100, previously forming part of the Murray Motorcycle Museum collection in the Isle of Man, sold for an impressive £242,300 ($394,108) at Bonhams' Sale of Important Pioneer, Vintage and Collectors' Motorcycles at the 32nd Classic Motorcycle Show in Stafford on Sunday (29th April 2012), comfortably exceeding its pre-sale estimate of £150,000 – 180,000. Known as the 'two of everything' model because its JAP v-twin engine had two carburettors, two magnetos and two oil pumps, this is one of the rarest of SS100 variants with only eight made during the 1934 model year.

Another great name in the history of the British motorcycle industry, Vincent, was represented in the sale by the 1939 Vincent 998cc Rapide Series A, previously part of the late Brian Verrall's exceptional collection and one of only 50-or-so survivors out of fewer than 80 made, which realized £225,500 ($366,849); and a 1955 Vincent 998cc Black Shadow, the last Series C example of this iconic model produced prior the introduction of the revised Series D range, which made what is believed to be a world record price of £124,700 ($202,108).

Top prices were also paid for a unique 1995 'Ferrari' 900cc Motorcycle by David Kay Engineering (£85,500/$139,132); a ROC-Yamaha 500cc Grand Prix racing motorcycle of 1992 (£48,300/$76,603); and a racing motorcycle from a very different era, the 1931 Douglas 750cc sidecar outfit, believed to be one of only three examples of this model built (£40,250/$65,500).

The ex-Mission Impossible III, c.2005 Triumph 865cc Bonneville Scrambler - as ridden by Tom Cruise – sold for £13,800 ($22,457).

In total, the sale realized £2,214,784 ($3,603,830) with 87% sold by lot.

Ben Walker, Head of Bonhams Motorcycle Department, comments, "Despite the April showers, the turnout at the Stafford sale was excellent. Spirited bidding, both within the room and over the phone from all over the globe, saw fantastic prices realized, including what must be a world record for a 1955 Vincent Black Shadow. We are delighted with this year's sale results."


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and appraisal services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to

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