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Running on Fumes

First Production Motorcycle Up for Auction

Monday, November 1, 2010
Bonhams is renowned as a seller of rare motorcycles, but the U.K.-based auction house firm will have one of the rarest on the block early next year. The auction, which will take place in Vegas on January 6th 2011, features a 115-year-old Hildebrand & Wolfmuller motorrad original. Produced in Germany, the Hildebrand & Wolfmuller machine is famed in motorcycle history as the first serial production power two-wheeler. Interested bidders should get their checkbooks prepped for some extra zeros, as Bonhams reckons this restored original will fetch upwards of $130,000 to $150,000.

Check out the details below, courtesy of Bonhams.
Hildebrand   Wolfmuller 1894
Save your milk money. This ride ain't coming cheap...

A complete 1894/95 Hildebrand & Wolfmüller will highlight Bonhams first Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction at The Imperial Palace Hotel and Casino hosted by the Auto Collection on 6th January 2011.

Coming from a private American collection where it has resided for approximately half a century, this 115-year old motorbike has been lightly and sympathetically restored some decades ago and is wonderfully patinated. In addition to its excellent condition, this pioneering vehicle is of the utmost historical significance - it was the first powered two-wheeler to enter series production and is the first vehicle to which the name “motorcycle” (motorrad in German) was ever applied.

This extraordinary news follows the record-breaking sale of another Hildebrand & Wolfmüller offered by Bonhams at their Stafford auction this April. That 1894 relic caused considerable excitement across the world resulting in a packed salesroom and an above-estimate selling price of £86,200. The model being offered in Las Vegas next January is substantially superior and carries a conservative estimate of $130,000-$150,000.

“Typically, the chance own an authentic Hildebrand & Wolfmüller is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” says Bonhams CEO Malcolm Barber. “Due to their extreme rarity and historical value they are almost never offered on either the open or private markets. Now Bonhams will have had the opportunity to represent two of these ‘holy grail of motorcycles’ within the space of a year.”

The rare appearance of a genuine Hildebrand & Wolfmüller on the auction block next January will bring buyers from around the globe. For sellers interested in consigning their motorcycles to this anticipated auction, there is still time. To contact a Bonhams representative call the US office on 415-391-4000 or e-mail Nick Smith: nick.smith@bonhams.com 

For information about the sale, visit www.bonhams.com/vegas  

Post Tags: Hildebrand & Wolfmuller, motorcycle auction
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