Every year Bonhams, the big auction house, holds their now famous Las Vegas motorcycle auction. This year’s auction produced some surprises—the most highly-anticipated items did not sell while others sold for unexpected prices.
Among the bikes that didn’t sell were Steve McQueen’s 1970 Husqvarna 400 dirt bike and a prized 1928 Ace Four with a presale estimate of $200,000 to $250,000.
The auction’s top seller was a 1939 BMW RS255 Kompressor (picture above) that fetched $480,000, but its sale price was way below its estimated presale value of $500,000 to $600,000. Second top seller, sold for $148,000, was a 1954 BMW Rennsport RS54 Sidecar (first photo below), believed to have been ridden by the BMW factory team when they won the 1954 Sidecar World Championship season. A 1952 Vincent 998cc Black Shadow went for $118,000 (second photo below).
A curious and rare 1920 Mars 956cc Type A20 (photo below), formerly owned by late Los Angels Times publisher Otis Chandler, sold for $75,000, way below its expected presale value.