Back in the early 70’s, Ducati built a number of 350-cc Mark 3s for the Swiss Army. But since the Swiss Army were limited to use only Swiss bikes, the Ducati 350 Mark 3s were rebadged as Condors.
To ensure that these bikes were up to the standard of the Swiss Army, the Italian automaker addressed a number of shortcomings in the original Ducati design, including the oil filter, which was modified to fit a standard Ducati. Other changes made to the bike include a bolt-up exhaust flange, an oil dipstick, and filler setup. Finally, the rear wheel was designed to be removed without having to deal with the chain, while the seat mount and electrical connectors were designed for ease of access.
All told, the bike at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco, which was powered by a 340cc SOHC single engine and mated to a five-speed transmission, was in good, original condition. It’s yet to be restored, which it may need in some respects, but it’s still good enough to fetch €3,000 - €4,000, which is about $3,800 - $5,200 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price, however, was $2,273.
For as long as Ducati has been around, there are only a handful of its bikes that can stake claim to being as beautiful as the 1963 98 T. First introduced at the 1952 Milan show as the 98 model, the 98 T became the epitome of Ducati’s excellence in that era.
The bike came with a pressed spine frame, 17" wheels, and a 98 CC OHV single engine that produced 5.5 horsepower at 6,800 rpm. It had a top speed of 46.5 mph and was mated to a four-speed transmission.
Through a number of updates and modifications, the 98 evolved into the 98 T in 1957 where it lasted for six years until 1963, at which time a full evolution of the bike was done. This particular 98 T model - CN: DM 3614 - came as a restored model with excellent paint and chrome finishes, making for an interesting collection piece for any avid Ducati collector.
Expected bid price at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco ranged from €3,000 - €4,000, which is about $3,800 - $5,200 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $758.
When talking about Ducati bikes with some serious racing pedigree in the 60’s, the Ducati 250 Diana has to be mentioned because it was the very first sporting 250 model that every young man had his eyes set on.
Aesthetically, the racing heritage was pretty evident, specifically the addition of racy clip-on handlebars, handsome new styling, and crackling exhaust note. It also weighed just 265 pounds, making its 249 cc SHC single engine more than capable of being a barn burner.
The horsepower output from the 250 Diana reaches 24 ponies and was capable of blasting off at a top speed of 85 mph. Eventually, the 250 Diana’s success spawned itself into a new model - the Mark 3 Super Sport - one that was more than adept at producing a stout 30 horsepower and mated to a five-speed transmission.
The early example that was on offer was believed to be a Diana, but is of an atypical configuration, akin to the sister model Monza, with high bars and a single seat. It has been finished in a black and gray, two-tone set up with sharp chrome details and was the subject of a thorough restoration.
It was at the RM Auctions in Monaco came with an expected auction price of €4,000 - €6,000, which is around $6,200 - $9,400 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $1,515.
As one of the earliest motorcycles Ducati has ever produced, there’s no shortage of history when it comes to the Cucciolo 65T. Designed by no less than Giovanni Fiorio, the 60 of 1949 became the first real motorcycle in Ducati’s history.
This was then followed by the 60 Sport in 1950, which came with a basic pushrod design and a 65 cc OHV single cylinder engine mated to a three-speed transmission. The model lasted in production until 1967 in the form of the 125 cc Cadet.
Back then, the Cucciolo 65T wasn’t so much into performance, as evidenced by the 2.25 horsepower output it generated. But for a bike of its time, and the technology that was available then, the Cucciolo 65T was as eye-catching then as it is today as a nice old restoration.
The Ducati Cucciolo 65T was put up for auction at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco with an estimated price of €3,000 - €4,000, which is around $3,800 - $5,200 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $3,030.
The Ducati 125 TS has lasted the test of time. Not only has it become one of the finest Ducati bikes ever built, but it also became the base model for which lightweight motorcycles are being designed today.
The 1964 125 TS is powered by a 124 cc SOHC single engine that’s mated to a four-speed transmission. That powertrain is capable of hitting a top speed of 70 mph with peak revs reaching 8,500 rpm.
Despite its less than imposing stature, the 125 TS has become one of the most popular classic Ducatis around. It’s a consistent presence in a number of vintage shows and competitive events, including the prestigious Motogiro d’Italia.
The model that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco was in sound original condition, and came with the bike’s original Rosso Rubino paint, adding history and character to an all-time classic. Expected bid price for the 125 TS was about €3,000 - €4,000, which is around $3,800 - $5,200 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $3,409.
America has always liked its bikes to carry more power. That wasn’t any more evident than with the Ducati 160 Monza, a product of the 125 cc SOHC engine that was increased to 160 cc to cater to the power-hungry US market.
In addition to the 160 cc SOHC single engine that produced a top speed of 63 mph and was mated to a four-speed transmission, the Ducati 160 Monza also came with a bevy of features that further elucidated its Americanized credentials. Among these features include a square tank towards the end of its production run, as well as a side panel and engine number that pretty much let everyone know that the bike came with a 160-cc engine.
The Ducati 160 Monza that made its way to the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco remains in sound, unrestored condition and is also one of only a few models left in the last production run of the 160 Monza line.
The auction price for the Ducati 160 Monza was around €2,000 - €3,000, which is about $2,500 - $3,800 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $1,515.
The Ducati 98 Moto Giro ran for a pretty long time in the 50’s and the early part of the 60’s, and was more than just a standard road-going bike. The model that was sitting at the RM Auctions in Monaco, in particular, appeared to have been a period race bike, with some evidence of race-preparation, including a straight-through pipe and a 98 cc OHV single cylinder engine that produced 6.8 horsepower with a top speed of 68 mph. It was mated to a four-speed transmission.
Some quarters even believe that this 98 Moto Giro was a participant at the Motogiro d’Italia, a race that we can safely say is one of the toughest in the sport of bike racing.
With all this history attached to it, it’s no surprise that the bike had an estimated bid price of €8,000 - €12,000, which is around $10,000 - $15,000 based on current exchange rates. What is surprising is that it only sold for $4,545.
The Ducati 125 Cadet/4 was one of the last Ducati bikes to carry the pushrod overhead-valve single cylinder engine. Making it even more attractive as a collector’s piece is that the bike only lasted two years because Berliner, the U.S. distributor of Ducati, decided they were not suitable for the American market.
The 125 Cadet/4 also shared many cycle parts with the two-stroke engine, although the engine was still based on the aforementioned overhead-valve unit. Nonetheless, a number of items on the list were changed, particularly the bore and stroke and the cylinder head design. Likewise, the spark plug was moved to the right, and the two overhead valves were set parallel.
The double cradle tubular steel frame was also similar to another Ducati bike, the 125 Bronco. Finally, the 125 Cadet/4’s 121 cc single-cylinder OHV four-stroke engine was mated to a four-speed transmission. It didn’t have the kind of power that would win races, but it sure did carry enough for a bike made by Ducati.
There aren’t a lot of 125 Cadet/4 bikes on the market today and the bike offered at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco was in unrestored condition. The expected bidding price was €2,000 - €3,000, which is around $2,500 - $3,800 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $758. Ouch!
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.
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.