One of the biggest winners at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco was the Ducati 750GT.
First introduced to the market in 1971, the 750GT was the personification of a flash-bang Ducati . It was flashy, to say the least. The first examples of the 750GT came with silver painted frames with the tank and side covers finished in a colorful blend of metallic colors that included gold, lime green, bright blue, or red.
Colors notwithstanding, the true highlight of the 750GT was its 748 cc SOHC V-twin engine that was capable of hitting top speeds in excess of 120 mph. The surest sign that Ducati went and invested a whole lot in the 750GT was because of the laborious and painstaking detail they took just to build one.
The construction of the engine was so precise that it took up to eight hours to assemble one unit, making sure that all the bevel-drive gears and bearings were correctly set up. If it was a racing engine, Ducati would take two days to build one. Initially, the bike’s sales lagged until Paul Smart won at Imola in 1972 with the 750GT, beating some of the best manufacturers this side of the galaxy. As a result, the 750GT became a legend of sorts, with Taglioni even saying that its engine was the best he ever designed.
As for the Ducati 750GT that was offered at the RM Auctions, that one came in excellent overall condition with superior paint, chrome details, and even the early Amal carburetors. The 750GT sold for a staggering €38,025 ($48,800), a price that’s miles north of what the estimated €12,000 - €15,000 ($15,400 - $19,000).
Exclusively sold in Italy to go with other Super Sport models, the Ducati 350 Super Sport was built as a smaller displacement model from 1989 to 1993 and traces its lineage to Ducati’s highly popular 900 cc Super Sport.
The 350 Super Sport was far from a slouch; it was powered by a 341 cc SOHC Desmo V-twin engine that was mated to a five-speed transmission, producing a stout 27 horsepower. Despite the svelte and sporty look, the 350 Super Sport was actually considered an economical bike, at least compared to the 400 cc Super Sport that was released in Japan and Germany until 1995 and the 600 cc Super Sport that was in production from 1993-1997.
The Ducati 350 Super Sport that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco came in original condition, complete with a nice red paint finish. However, the bike was also noted as "needing some work," which probably explains why it only sold for €585 ($750), a number that’s far below its pre-auction estimated price of €2,800 - €3,800 ($3,600 - $4,900).
The Ducati 98TL isn’t the most glamorous of all Ducati bikes, but it still belongs in the list of any Ducati collector worth his salt.
The 98 TL was effectively the touring version of Ducati’s once-famous 98 cc OHV pushrod series. It was a little cheaper than the Italian bike maker’s sporting OHC models, and with the cheaper price tag, the 98 TL was considered one of the most economical and lightweight Ducati bikes in history.
The model that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco is finished in red and has been described as a "nice original," a phrase that should come as music to the ears of Ducati collectors. It’s still owed a nice restoration job, but that should come with the territory if you’re going to make a bid for it.
Speaking of bids, the 1954 98 TL - CN: DM 13105 - was expected to have a bid range of about €2,500 - €3,500, which is around $3,300 - $4,500 based on current exchange rates. Actual auction price was a disappointing €585, which is about $751 at the current rates.
Back in 1980, the Ducati TT Corsa Pantah made headlines after it competed at the 1980 Italian National Junior Championship with four factory bikes built by no less than Franco Farne. The TT Corsa Pantah ended up winning five of seven races after being driven by Vanes Francini, Paolo Menchini and Guido Del Piano.
The bike’s red and yellow bodywork is only one of many stand-out qualities about the bike. For the TT Corsa Pantah, Farne used the 500SL frame and added a Marzoccchi racing suspension. Even the engine, a 583 cc SOHC Desmo V-tine single engine was capable of producing 70 horsepower at 9,800 rpm and mated to a five-speed transmission.
For this particular example, the seller has been on record saying that the bike was ridden by no less than Vanes Francini in the 1980 Italian Junior Series. It’s been tagged as in excellent condition, with red and yellow factory paintwork and unmarked fairing, Paioli front forks, oil cooler, Brembo brakes and adjustable rear shocks by Marzocchi are also part of the bike’s overall package.
Combine its history and current state, it’s no wonder why this TT Corsa Pantah was expected to fetch around €14,000 - €16,000, which is around $18,000 - $20,700 based on current exchange rates. Its actual purchase price at the auction was €11,700, or about $15,026 at the current rates. Ouch.
Some would say that the Ducati 350 Sport Desmo, together with the 500 Sport Desmo, was a bike that vindicated Ducati , especially after its predecessors failed to capture the market’s imagination the way Ducati wanted them to.
Following in the reins of the disappointing GTL models, the 350 Sport Desmo featured a plethora of upgrades, including the addition of Borrani rims, Marzocchi forks, and Brembo brakes. On top of that, the bike also came with a 350 cc SOHC Desmo parallel-twin engine that was mated to a five-speed transmission.
The bike was successful enough that Ducati even launched the 500 Sport Desmo and the racing 500 Super Sport in 1977, marking a return to form that only Ducati could have pulled of.
The 350 Sport Desmo that was shown at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco fetched €3,218 ($4,100), a price that was right on par with its pre-auction range €3,000 - €4,000 ($3,800 - $5,200).
As the brainchild of designer Pierre Terblanche, the Ducati MHE900 was born to commemorate Mike Hailwood’s remarkable comeback win at the Isle of Man TT in 1978. Essentially, the MHE900 is Ducati’s first attempt at E-Commerce, building 1,000 models of the bike and putting it up for sale on the Internet. As expected, the MHE900 was an immediate success, prompting Ducati to build another 1,000 numbered units.
In terms of design, the MHE900 comes with a retro styling that harkens back to the design of the 70’s. From the complicated tank and fairing to the dingle-sided steel swing-arm, the MHE900 is truly a bike that stands on its own two wheels. More than just its classic looks, the bike is also powered by an impressive powertrain in the form of a 904-cc, two-valve, air-cooled Desmo Super Sport engine.
The bike auctioned off at the RM Auctions in Monaco - Model No.3 of 2,000 - was about as new condition as any of the other models in existence. It’s been on a number of motor shows as a display bike and was even exhibited at the Ducati factory. Rest assured, this MHE900 is a bike that Ducati collectors would trip over their bids just to own.
Expected pricing for this bike was about €10,000 - €12,000, which is around $13,000 - $15,500 based on current exchange rates. Actual auction price was €12,870, or about $16,528 at the current rates.
More photos of the Ducati MHE900 Model No. 3 of 2,000 after the jump.
Ducati’s line of Cucciolo motor bicycles were so successful that by 1950, the Italian bike maker had already sold over 200,000 units of the model. With the demand for the bike hitting fever pitch, Ducati decided to branch out from the Cucciolo and build a model that was developed from it.
Thus, the Ducati 60 Sport was born in March 1950.
Looking the part of those earlier design motorcycles, the 60 Sport was by no means a push-over model. While it was built in the mold of the Cucciolo, the 60 Sport carried its own 65 cc four-stroke OHV engine that was capable of hitting a top speed of 40 mph with a fuel tank capacity of 200 mpg.
The particular 60 Sport model that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco is one of the oldest real motorcycles that Ducati has ever built. With a company that has become one of the most famous motorcycle brands in the world, its easy to see how a model that comes with an
older restoration and a pleasing patina will fetch plenty of attention at the auction block.
The Ducati 60 Sport was expected to hit a bid price of around €1,500- €2,500, which is around $1,900 - $3,400 based on current exchange rates. It actually sold for €2,340, about $3,000 at the current exchange rates.
Back when cafe racers didn’t come with all the technology and design dynamics of today’s models, bikes like the Ducati 65 Cucciolo Sport were the kings of the road.
As the sporting version of the Ducati 65, the 65 Cucciolo Sport was as popular a cafe racer as they’d come. It featured a dual seat, clip-on handlebars, and the same steel body design that has made up the true classic Ducati.
In addition to its styling, the 65 Cucciolo Sport also carried an impressive powertrain in the form of a 65 cc OHV single cylinder engine that produces 2.5 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and is mated to a three-speed transmission. It wasn’t the most powerful Ducati of its time, let alone any time, but for sheer riding pleasure, the Ducati 65 Cucciolo Sport was in a true class of its own.
The model that will be auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco on May 11, 2012 - CN: DM 56026 - is an older restoration model with a red and black paint, good chrome, and a black vinyl seat. Expected bid price for the bike is around €3,000 - €4,000, which is around $3,800 - $5,100 based on current exchange rates.
More photos of the Ducati 65 Cucciolo Sport CN: DM 56026 after the jump.
The Ducati 125 Formula 3 bikes were born from Fabio Taglioni’s iconic 100-cc Gran Sport, a model that set the pattern for Ducati singles for the next 20 years. With its 100 cc SOHC bevel-drive single generated engine that produced 9 horsepower at 9,000 rpm with a top speed of 80 mph, the Gran Sport became the barometer for all other Ducati single bikes built in the 50’s.
One of the bikes that was born from this lineage is the Formula 3, or F3 for short. Whereas the Gran Sport carried 100 cc at its disposal, the F3’s powertrain was increased to a 125 cc SOHC Desmo single engine, a move that also resulted in a bump in horsepower to 12 ponies at 9,800 rpm and an increased top speed of 93 mph. The Desmodromic valve gear, which mechanically opened and closed the valves, was developed from the Mercedes-Benz technology they used on their straight-eight W196 Grand Prix cars. While Mercedes never used it in on its production cars at that time, Taglioni saw the opportunity to develop it for racing purposes.
Eventually, the Ducati F3 became available in different powertrain trims, including the 125 cc, the 175 cc, and the 250 cc. All these later models gained enclosed valve springs, with the larger bikes also carrying an improved twin-leading shoe Amadoro brake. Steering head angles and rear suspensions were also altered to improve handling while larger megaphone exhausts were fitted into the bike’s overall set-up.
The Ducati Formula 3 is a model that was developed exclusively for racing purposes with Ducati preparing them for private racers. The model that will be auctioned off is one of these examples: an original, unrestored F3 with a factory number plate fly screen, alloy wheel rims, Dell’Orto SS1 250 carburettor, Veglia competition tachometer, and an Aprilia headlight. Characteristic of its authenticity can be seen on the present patina on the bike, an irreplaceable quality that not only shows its age, but also its condition.
Expected auction price for the 125 F3 is around €20,000 - €30,000, which is around $26,000 - $39,000 based on current exchange rates. Rm Auctions will be taking the highest bid on May 11, 2012 in Monaco, so get those check books ready!
Classic Ducati bikes usually fetch a hefty price in an auction setting. And when you’re talking about classic Ducati’s, the 98 Sport belongs front and center on that list.
Built in 1953 to join the ranks of the Ducati 98 N and the Ducati 98 T OHV, the 98 Sport became an immediate success in the market, despite its modest performance capabilities. At the heart of the Ducati 98 Sport is a 98 cc OHV single cylinder engine that’s been mated to a four-speed transmission. The powertrain was capable of producing 6.8 horsepower with a top speed of 56 mph. Those numbers may not mean much compared to the bikes Ducati has in its line-up today, but back then, that was enough to make the 98 Sport one of the most popular bikes the company’s range.
One of the 98 Sport bikes will be up for auction by RM Auctions on May 11, 2012 with a price range of €3,500-€4,500, which is around $4,500-$5,800 based on current exchange rates. The auction model comes fully restored with a silver and black two-tone paint finish to go with chrome and alloy rims.