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.
The Ducati 250 Monza owes its long and illustrious history to the old 250 F3 Racer that Franco Villa used to dominate races back in the early 60’s. The success of the latter spawned a popular trend for the road bikes of its era, particularly the 250 Monza.
Sure, the Monza didn’t come with the same racing pedigree of the 250 F3 Racer, but thanks to a 249 cc SOHC single engine, it was still capable of producing north of 20 horsepower with a top speed of 80 mph. More than just the engine, the 250 Monza also came with a new design, owed largely to new seats, tank, and side panels. Eventually, the 250 Monza, along with the Diana and SCR Scrambler, also began to carry an angular tank and a headlight nacelle styling.
The 1966 Ducati 250 Monza that was at the RM Auctions in Monaco is an older restoration model with good paint and chrome details. Estimated bid price was around €3,500 - €4,500, which is around $4,400 - $5,600 based on current exchange rates. Its actual selling price was $2,652.
This particular Ducati 125 Sport is not like most of its kin. It’s actually the very first bike to be owned by Carlo Saltarelli and is one of the final 125 Sports ever produced.
No wonder it’s got ’collectible’ written all over it.
The bike is powered by a 124 cc SOHC single and is mated to a four-speed transmission. It’s capable of hitting over 70 mph and can rev up to 8,500 rpm. Aesthetically, this 125 Sport has been finished with the bike’s signature metallic blue with gold accents and fitted with alloy rims.
This Ducati 125 Sport was held at the 2012 RM auctions in Monaco and was up for auction with an estimated price of €3,500 - €4,500, which is around $4,400 - $5,600 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $4,545.
As one of the rarest and most historically significant models of the 125 Sport, this unit is truly meant to be owned by a Ducati collector.
The Ducati 250 Scrambler was the third model in Ducati’s line-up to use wide engine crankcases. Packed with a 249 cc SOHC single engine and mated to a five-speed transmission, the 1972 250 Scrambler became one of the most sought-after bikes of its time.
The 250-cc engine is often considered to be the smoothest of the entire Ducati Scrambler range, despite not carrying a decompression lever to assist in starting.
This dark yellow and black example, which was up for bidding at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco, is described as a very nice original with good paint and chrome and would complete the set for a buyer seeking one of the most favored Ducati models of the 70’s.
Expected price for the 1972 Ducati 250 Scrambler hits between €4,000 - €6,000, which is around $5,000 - $7,500 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was right in the middle at $6,818.
The Ducati 250 Mark 3 first made its appearance at the 1967 Cologne show and it only took a year before the bike was being prepared for production duty.
Before receiving Taglioni’s celebrated Desmo engine, the 1967 250 Mark 3 featured a 249 cc SOHC single engine that’s mated to a five-speed transmission. In addition, the 250 Mark 3 also featured a host of other features, including a 10-to-one compression ratio and a Dell’Orto SS1 29D carburetor, allowing the bike to hit an impressive top speed of about 89 mph.
As far as the model is concerned, the one that was offered at the RM Auctions came with its original blue and gold paint. Some signs of fading have appeared on the bike, but not enough to warrant any concern. Finally, the bike also has a set of attractive Borrani alloy rims, Marzocchi forks, and Smiths gauges.
Put them all together and you have an estimated bid price for the bike at around €3,000 - €4,000, which is around $3,800 - $5,200 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $3,788.
The Ducati 85 belonged to another range of entry-level OHV pushrod Ducatis that was not only the picture of lightness, but was also as economical a bike as anything in the market back in those days.
It featured an 85cc OHV single cylinder engine that was mated to a four-speed transmission. The engine may not mean a whole lot from the Ducati perspective these days, but in a time when power was a lot more subdued, the 85 Sport carried enough ponies to be a serious player.
In terms of design, the 85 Sport, or this model in particular, was finished in blue and silver, and is an original model that may be in need of some restoration work. As it is now, the 85 Sport might need some few tune-ups, but once finished it could make for a head-turning classic bike on the road.
The Ducati 85 Sport was expected to fetch around €2,000 - €3,000, which is around $2,500 - $3,800 based on current exchange rates, when it went up for auction in Monaco by RM Auctions. Actual selling price was $2,273.
Before the 750 Super Sport V-twin and Paul Smart and Bruno Spaggiari’s amazing 1-2 at Imola in 1972, no Ducati bike could go as fast as the 450-cc Desmo Corsa.
The 450 Desmo Coras first appeared at Rimini in 1968, where it amazingly pulled 50 horsepower at 9,000 rpm. The 450 had twin plug ignition, larger valves, a 42-mm Dell’Orto carburetor, and a 10-to-1 compression ratio, reinforced swing arm and Fontana twin leading shoe front brake.
The rich racing history of the 450 Desmo Corsa is a true testament to its reputation as one of the fastest era bikes in the Italian bike maker’s history.
The bike that’s being offered is a well-prepared and unrestored Italian series racer that was once ridden by Nencioni. It’s been finished in red and white and features Borrani alloy rims, Dell’Orto SS1 carburettor, Marzocchi forks with a Fontana front brake, Veglia tachometer, and Menani handlebars.
This particular machine was also displayed at the Ducati factory museum and prominently featured in the official Ducati museum book. It comes with an attestation from NCR confirming it was race-prepared by Ducati with special racing components.
The bike was sold at the RM Auctions in Monaco for a price of €29,250, which is around $36,400 based on current exchange rates.
These days, Ducati scooters aren’t what you’d call the company’s bread-and-butter product. But there was a time when these little rockets were pretty popular in the market, and one that stood out was the Ducati Brio.
In an attempt to expand its market reach back in the 60’s, Ducati decided to dive into budget two-strokes with the intention of creating as many variants of this line as possible.
One model that was born in this era was the Ducati Brio. First released in 1963 with the 48 Brio, the 100 Brio followed a year later in 1964. The latter enjoyed tremendous success in its time, thanks to its 100 cc single-cylinder two-stroke, fan-cooled engine that was mated to a three-speed transmission.
The model that was sold at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco is as rare a Brio 100 as you can find. It’s in good condition considering that it’s unrestored and it was sold for €1,755 ($2,200), which is a tad below the expected auction price of €2,000 - €3,000, around $2,500 - $3,800 based on current exchange rates.
When Ducati launched the the first-generation Monster bikes - the M900 in 1993, the M600 in 1994, and the M750 in 1995 - it paved way to a new line of naked street fighters that was to become a Ducati staple in the coming years.
The Monster was designed by Miguel Angel Galluzzi, who built the bike at the behest of Massimo Bordi. He once said that this bike was what Marlon Brando would have ridden in The Wild One, had he been able to get one.
The Ducati Monster then paved the way for this particular bike, the Monster S4R, which made its debut in 2001 packing a 916 cc liquid-cooled DOHC Desmo V-twin engine with a six-speed transmission, semi-floating Brembo disc brakes, light wheels, and Showa inverted forks.
This particular bike is the actual test mule in which the 916 motor was fitted, when the project was being developed. It’s extremely rare for a developmental bike to come to market, especially one with such an obviously low set of matching numbers.
At the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco, the bike was sold at a price of €2,340, which is about $2,900 based on current exchange rates.
The look of the Ducati 50 Sport SL1 might not tickle the taste buds of today’s generation, but back in the day, this road-runner was a bonafide stud on the road.
The 50 Sport SL1 was one of the last 50-cc Ducati Sports ever built. Quite frankly, the SL1 was one of the most elegant of this variant, boasting of a design that became popular in its time. On top of that, it also carried a moderate 50 cc single cylinder, two-stroke engine that was mated to a four speed transmission. It also weighed only 100 lbs, which means that it was capable of hitting a top speed of 50 mph. It also had twin fuel fillers on the petrol tank, a full year before the 350 Desmo Mark 3 would have the same feature.
The 50 Sport SL1 that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions ended up being bid on feverishly by a number of bidders. It was sold at a price of €10,530 ($13,500), well above the listed auction price range of €2,500 - €3,500 ($3,200 - $4,500).