Bonhams are returning to the International Motorcycle Show in Staffordshire on October 16th 2011 with another exceptional line-up of motorcycles. The star of the auction is the 1929 Brough Superior SS100 known as Moby Dick - the fastest motorcycle of the 1920s - which has attracted a pre-sale estimate of £240,000 - £280,000.
Hailed in its day as 'the fastest privately owned machine in the world suitable for road use', this motorcycle is expected to prove very popular with bidders. Tested by Motor Cycling magazine in 1931, 'Moby Dick' achieved a top speed of 106mph, a staggering achievement at a time when very few road vehicles of any sort were capable of reaching three-figure speeds. Further tuning of the modified 1,142cc v-twin engine later raised that figure to 115mph in top (third) gear, with 109mph achievable in second. Sold but later repurchased by the vendor's family, Moby Dick was restored in 1998 and since then has continued to delight and amaze enthusiasts wherever it appears.
A 1924 Brough Superior 980cc SS80 represents a rare opportunity to purchase one of the earliest surviving SS80s. It was the first of the Brough Superior range to feature the cradle frame derived from Bert le Vack's Brooklands racer and also an early machine to feature a twist grip throttle and dynamo lighting as standard. It is also fitted with the desirable Bonnkisen 100 mph speedometer and it is expected to sell for £75,000-95,000. Another prominent Brough Superior being offered here is the 1933 '11-50' that took the 'best original in show' award at the BSOC Rally in 2004 (£32,000-38,000).
Barn-find offerings include a 1955 BSA DB34 Gold Star (£3,000-4,000), 1956 Ariel 998cc Square Four (£3,000-4,000), 1959 Velocette 499cc Venom (£1,500-2,500) and a 1960 Triumph 649cc T110 (£1,000-1,500).
Ben Walker, Head of Motorcycles at Bonhams, comments, "The second Bonhams Stafford sale of 2011 will offer one of our most eclectic selection of significant collectors' motorcycles ever, with everything from one of the earliest Brough Superior SS80s to a concours condition Kawasaki Z1."
Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's oldest and largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques.