The personal ride of the late-Indian Larry who died while performing a motorcycle stunt in 2004 was auctioned off for $220,000.
The bike, named “Grease Monkey,” was the first custom chopper Ithe popular custom bike builder created that attracted worldwide attention. (Photo courtesy of Mecum Auctions) It was just one of the many motorcycles sold at Mecum Auctions’ 29th annual Vintage and Antique Motorcycle Auction Jan. 21-26, 2020 at the South Point Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
Here’s a look at some of the other machines that sold. For more information on the auction results, go to www.mecum.com.
Two 1973 Triumph X75 Hurricanes were up for auction. One sold for $26,400 and the other for $22,000. AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Craig Vetter created this design initially for BSA to transform the Rocket III. The Vetter-designed BSA prototype had an American hot rod look to it. Unfortunately, BSA was in its final days and the bike never made it to production. Triumph revived Vetter’s concept a few years later with the release of the limited-edition Triumph X75 Hurricane.
Mecum Auctions had several Maico dirtbikes on the auction block. The auction house says a 1972 Maico 501 that was the 24th off the assembly line and restored to original condition sold for $22,550. A 1973 Maico 501 desert racer sold for $3,575.
Four 1990 Honda RC30s were sold for $53,350; $42,000; $35,000 and $33,000. This bike came standard with a quick-release front fork system and a single-sided swingarm for quick tire changes. The aluminum frame used two curved extrusions to wrap around the water-cooled engine, which was a V-4 DOHC design with four valves per cylinder. The camshafts were gear driven, the brakes were top-shelf with 4-piston calipers, and the 6-speed gearbox had very close ratios. The engine pumped out a claimed 118 horsepower, good for speeds of more than 150 mph.
A stock 1976 RD400 with 5,777 miles on the odometer sold for $4,500. It featured a short wheelbase, light weight, simple 398cc twin-cylinder two-stroke engine and disc brakes. Many aftermarket parts were available, from clip-on handlebars to rearsets to café racer seats and bodywork to bigger pistons, making the bike a favorite among the go-fast crowd.
A 1979 Yamaha RD400 Daytona sold for $7,150.
A fan of Honda café racers picked up a yellow 1976 Honda CB400F Super Sport for $7,150 while a blue version sold for $5,500. A red 1975 CB400F sold for $5,775 and a red 1975 CB400F sold for $4,400.
In 1973, following the introduction of its CB750 and CB500 four-cylinder models, Honda decided to miniaturize the concept with the CB350 Four, one of the smallest production four-cylinder motorcycles ever imported into the United States. The CB350F was a brilliant four-cylinder technical exercise but it was heavy, expensive and no faster than the company’s own 350cc twin. So for 1975, the CB350F became the CB400F Super Sport, with a displacement boost to 408cc.
While the 350 looked like a smaller CB750, the 400 had minimalist, cafe-racer looks, with low, narrow bars for its day, a six-speed transmission and a red zone that started at 10,000 rpm.
Other bikes on the auction block included a 1985 Honda NS400R that sold for $24,200; a 1986 Suzuki GSX-R 750 LTD that sold for $22,000; a 1983 Kawasaki KZ1000R ELR that fetched $18,700, a 1973 Kawasaki Z1 900 that sold for $24,200; a 1978 Kawasaki Z1R TC turbo that sold for $29,700; a 1969 Kawasaki H1 Mach III 500 that sold for $13,200 and a 1974 Kawasaki H2 750 that sold for $23,100.