Back in the late 50’s and the early 60’s, Ducati had the 125 Aurea, considered one of the best push-rod models in the Italian bike maker’s line-up. Carrying a 125 cc OHV single-cylinder engine that produced 6.5 horsepower and mated to a four-speed transmission, the 125 Aurea was capable of hitting a top speed of 53.3 mph.
Back in those days, 53.3 mph wasn’t something you could just scoff at.
As for this 1958 Ducati 125 Aurea, the final series model was being offered at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco. An original example with CN: DM125A/87831, this particular 125 Aurea is finished in a two-tone blue and gold paint finish and could be a candidate for a nice restoration program. It’s the kind of bike that’s going to look completely sick once the restoration job is done.
Interested bidders for this 1958 Ducati 125 Aurea were expected to keep around €2,500 - €3,500 handy, which is around $3,200 - $4,500 based on current exchange rates. Turns out, they didn’t need that much as it was auctioned off for $1,136.
There was a point in Ducati’s history when everything wasn’t so hunky-dory for the Italian automaker. Back in the 70’s, Ducati was in the middle of one of the worst stretches in its history, having failed to catch on to the 250-, 350-, and 450-cc markets.
Nevertheless, Ducati soldiered on, and from 1975-1977, they were able to build a bike - the 125 Regolarita Six Days - that ended up being one of the rarest Ducati models in history.
The scarcity of this bike doesn’t have anything to do with the modest power train - a 124 cc two-stroke single engine that’s mated to a six-speed transmission - nor does it have anything to do with the relatively heavy frame either (it weighs 238 lbs!).
People are going crazy for this model today because the bike was cancelled relatively early in its production cycle, making it one of the most difficult bikes to get a hold of.
The bike had an expected auction price of €3,500 - €4,500, which is around $4,500 - $5,800 based on current exchange rates, when it went up for auction at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco. Actual selling price was $8,333.
Ducati’s racing heritage is unrivaled in the industry. Back in the 50’s, the Italian bike maker was already blazing trails and winning championships, including the 1955 and 1956 Motogiro d’Italia and Milan-Taranto races.
We’re mentioning those two races in particular because the engines used there ended up being used in a number of production bikes, including the Ducati 175 TS.
The 175 TS was an evolution model from the bevel-drive 175 Sport, which made its debut at the Milan Bike Show in 1956. Despite being a "de-tuned" version of the 175 Sport, the 175 TS still carried a 175 cc SOHC single engine that could produce 12 horsepower, manage a top speed of 68 mph, and do so while mated to a four-speed transmission.
This particular 175 TS also holds special acclaim as it is an early example made a round-the-world trip in 1957 and 1958, ridden by Giorgio Monetti and Leo Tartarini, who later became chief of Italjet. It’s a restored bike that was estimated to hit bid prices of €4,000 - €6,000, which is around $5,000 - $7,500 based on current exchange rates, when it hit the 2012 RM Auction in Monaco. Actual selling price was $3,030.
Every successful business understands that in order to be successful, the ultimate thing you look at is the bottom line. It’s no different for an esteemed brand like Ducati, who at one point in time, decided to produce a range of moped and lightweight two-stroke motorcycles that were all designed to expand their sales volume.
In 1961, Ducati decided to release the 48 Piuma, a relatively simple bike that was catered to students and young adults alike. It came with a 48 cc single-cylinder, two-stoker engine that was mated to a single three-speed unit gearbox, with a hand gear change incorporated in the throttle grip.
Compared to the other models released at that time, the Brisk, the Piuma has larger section tires, which really doesn’t count for a whole lot in the bigger scheme of things.
The particular 48 Piuma that was at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco was in original and unrestored condition with an estimated bid price of €1,000 - €2,000, which is around $1,200 - $2,500 based on current exchange rates. Actualy selling price was $1,136.
To say that the Ducati 175 Sport wasn’t an important bike in its time could be considered a huge understatement. Unbeknownst to those that didn’t live through those years, the 175 Sport formed the basis for all the Ducati singles through 1974, with some of the the earliest examples carrying the manufacturer’s most whimsical and elegant quirks.
Dressed in colorful and flamboyant paint colors and fitted with a "jelly mould" fuel tank, the 175 Sport was the picture of unique bike back in the 60’s. But more than just being a picture of uniqueness, the 175 Sport also packed a wallop for a powertrain.
There’s not a whole lot to be said about a bike that comes with a 175 cc SOHC single-cylinder engine that develops 14 horsepower at 8,000 rpm and is mated to a four-speed transmission. It has a top speed of 81 mph and weighs only 229 lbs.
One of those earlier models was auctioned at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco. The bike, CN: DM165/08165, is an excellent older restoration with a colorful red and gold finish. It has the correct hard-rubber SAFA battery, and the chrome is in excellent condition. Expected price range for this 175 Sport was around €5,000 - €7,000, which is about $6,500 - $9,000 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $6,061.
For a change, here’s one Ducati that’s went on auction at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco with less than 20 years of existence.
The Ducati 996 Biposto was first developed in 1999 from the 916 model, which also spurned the 955, the bike that Carl Fogarty rode on his way to World Superbike dominance in the mid 90’s.
Unlike some of the other Ducati models that were up for auction, the 996 Biposto came with relatively modern technology, beginning with a 996 cc fuel-injected, water-cooled DOHC Desmo V-twin engine that develops a powerful 122 horsepower with a top speed of 161 mph. Power from the engine courses through a six-speed transmission.
In addition to its ridiculous engine capabilities, the 996 Biposto also had the distinctive under-seat exhaust that set off a trend and is now being copied by almost every other manufacturer. The forks are upside-down Showa while the suspension - both front and rear - are adjustable. Likewise, the bike also comes with Brembo disc brakes, a single-sided rear swing-arm, and Marchesini five-spoke wheels.
The model that was auctioned off was the base 996 Biposto with CN: ZDMH200AAXB005641. The bike was expected to carry a bid price of about €3,500 - €5,000, which is around $4,500 - $6,500 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $5,152.
This 1965 Ducati 250 GP is only a replica model of the iconic 250 GP super bike, but that doesn’t mean that it should be ignored. On the contrary, this bike is a living testament to what people will do to ensure that they’re replicas are as close to the real models as possible.
The bike was constructed to competition specs, including the addition of Ducati’s big-valve 250-cc SOHC engine. The engine comes with twin plugs, a single Dell’Orto PHF32CS pumper carburetor, a five-speed gearbox, straight-cut primary gears, and a competition clutch.
Quite a replica, huh?
There’s more too. The "replica" 350 GP also has a full fairing, Veglia tachometer, clip-on bars, rear sets, twin leading-shoe front brake, a left-side gear change, and last but certainly not least, a Conti megaphone exhaust, as well as a quick-release fiberglass fuel tank.
Needless to say, this red and silver 250 GP replica was built with the most laborious attention to detail as any replica we’ve seen in years. Maybe that’s why it was pegged for an auction price from €14,000 - €18,000 ($18,000 - $23,000) at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco. Actual selling price was $10,606.
Good examples of the Ducati 200 Elite are hard to find these days, which is was made this particular model that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco truly worthy of some collector’s prized bids.
First introduced in 1959, the Ducati 200 Elite was developed by boring the 175-cc motor by 5 mm, to a capacity of 204 cc. That move resulted in an increased output of 18 horsepower at 7,500 rpm with a faster top speed of 87 mph. Not too shabby for a bike built in 1959, right?
More than just its performance capabilities, the Elite 200 also featured a jelly mould tank, clip-on bars and dual mufflers of the 175, and 18" wheels.
As far as the bike that was in question - CN: DM200E/154587 - it was put through an old restoration job, but despite that, it still came with excellent paint and chrome details, making it a true vintage ride in every sense of the word.
Expected bids for the 1959 Ducati 200 Elite ranged from €7,000 - €9,000, which is around $9,000 - $11,600 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $9,091.
A 200-horsepower bike is no joke and the fact that it’s a limited edition model that only carries 100 units only adds to its prestige. The MV Augusta F4CC is that kind of bike.
Based on the F4, the F4CC was built in 2007 as a limited edition model in honor of the company’s founder, Claudio Castiglioni. The bike came with a ridiculous 1,078 cc engine that produced a staggering 200 horsepower. In order to achieve the increased displacement, MV Augusta increased the bike’s bore and stroke while also adding lighter pistons, stronger connecting rods, a one-of-a-kind slipper clutch, plenty of exotic materials, and a full-titanium exhaust system, resulting in a bike that weighs 8.8 lbs less than a standard F4R model.
This particular model was in superb condition and only had 2,030 km of mileage. It’s no wonder that for a bike that cost €100,000 ($125,000) brand new, it was scooped up at a recent auction for €49,725, which is about $62,700 based on current exchange rates.
The wide range of Ducati bikes that were auctioned off on May 11, 2012 present a list of some of the most historically significant machines the Italian bike maker has produced.
One in particular is the Ducati 125 TV ’Testone,’ a bike that first broke into the motorcycle scene back in 1961 as part of Ducati’s line of 125 cc bikes. Despite introducing a more powerful range of 175 cc SOHC bikes four years earlier in 1957, the 1961 TV ’Testone’ still carried the 125cc powertrain until 1968.
As classic bikes go, the 1961 125 TV ’Testone’ is the very definition of the word. In addition to its impressive powertrain, which produced an output of 6.5 horsepower, the bike also carried some significant styling cues other Ducati bikes, particularly those that carried Taglioni’s revolutionary sporting designs.
The model that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco carries the chassis number DM 1931 and has been dressed in Ducati’s iconic and traditional Rosso Corsa colors. Despite being half a century old, the bike still remains in great condition and was expected to be sold for a bid price of anywhere between €2,500 - €3,500, which is around $3,200 - $4,500 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $2,652.