Records Set at Bonhams' 4th Annual Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction

1978 Ducati NCR
A legendary 1978 Ducati NCR in untouched condition from the Silverman Museum Racing Collection.

Several new records were set when Bonhams hosted its annual Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction at Bally’s Hotel & Casino on Thursday, January 9, 2014. From the Silverman Museum Racing Collection, a legendary 1978 Ducati NCR in untouched condition sold for $175,500 after spirited bidding for what is believed to be a new auction record for the Bologna model.

An historically important 1940 Harley-Davidson EL from the Pierce Family Museum Collection was the subject of an intense bidding war from clients in the room, online and on the phones, and made a new world auction record when it realized an astounding $159,000.

1940 Harley-Davidson EL
1940 Harley-Davidson EL from the Pierce Family Museum Collection.

Another motorcycle from the Silverman Collection, a stunning and highly desirable 1973 Ducati 750 Super Sport “Green Frame” achieved $137,000, also making a new record, while a rare and race-ready 1954 BMW Rennsport RS54 sold for $126,000 to a private U.S. collector.

The highly publicized 1923 Indian Big Chief with Princess Sidecar formerly owned by Steve McQueen and restored for him by famed artist Von Dutch, was the subject of passionate bidding and ultimately won by an American collector for $126,000, setting a new auction record for the model. The same collector also purchased the other iconic Steve McQueen 1935 Indian Chief for $80,500.

“We are very pleased to have been able to offer a superb and diverse selection of the highest quality motorcycles from around the world,” said Nick Smith, Bonhams U.S. Head of Motorcycles. “The results confirm our team’s capabilities and the strength of the collectors’ motorcycle market, and we’re looking forward to a great 2014.”

Malcolm Barber, Bonhams Group CEO and auctioneer at the sale, commented, “As the international auction house of repute holding sales of collectors’ motorcycles seven months of the year, we know the market intimately and we’re very pleased to be at the forefront of this very exciting industry.”

The next Bonhams auction to feature motorcycles will be in Paris at the Grand Palais on February 6 and will feature His Holiness, Pope Francis’ 2013 Harley-Davidson Dyna Super Glide that will be sold for charity. Then, in April, is the Stafford Motorcycle Sale in England featuring a barn-find 1939 Brough Superior SS100 that has been in single-family ownership since 1961. For more information, visit


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