This Hildebrand & Wolfmüller is the world’s first-ever patented motorcycle and it recently sold at auction for $131,200. Made in Germany, the motorrad is powered by a 1488cc four-stroke twin engine developing an impressive for the time 2.5 hp at 240rpm. Weighing around 132 pounds and reaching a top speed of approximately 31 mph, this was the time’s only and best mechanical horse around. And it showed german ingenuity. For instance, the water needed for cooling the engine was held in the rear fender, while the transmission system is similar to that of a locomotive.
The vintage production motorcycle sit in an US barn for the past 70 years and after being auctioned off in England it now sees its way back to Germany for display. Hit the jump to see a restored 1896 Hildebrand & Wolfmüller buzz around.
Not few of Steve McQueen’s toys were recently added to Bonhams for the annual Classic California auction at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. Most importantly, the auction – which is scheduled for next month – includes a 1914 Indian Model F Boardtrack Racer.
The Hollywood legend owned the single-cylinder 500cc motorcycle untill he passed in 1980. The old Indian was first auctioned four years later. If you’re a fan of the iconic and rare piece of machinery and also want that celebrity feel together with it, find out that the auction will start at around $46K.
The café racer style may not have started on Japanese bikes, but it does help turn some of these into absolutely gorgeous machines. For example, this 1975 Suzuki GT550 (I know, it looks brand new) is probably the coolest café racer approach on a classic Japanese bike.
Thomas Leeming from Montana recently finished building it and he doesn’t forget to mention some of the changes he has done: "pipes by Omar’s. Electronic ignition. Battery, oil tank and electrics are hidden under the seat cowl."
What we like the most about the Suzuki GT550 cafe racer is the racy and yet classy look given by the bike’s stance and the multitude of shiny bits and parts. More pics after the jump.
This vintage steam motorcycle prototype was built in 1836 by English railway engineers George Stephenson (father) and Robert Stephenson (son), who also built the Rocket locomotive. To us, it looks greater than many concept bikes we see today, but it seems it was a little too much for times in which the forms of self transportation consisted in either walking
or riding a horse.
After being discovered in an old abandoned workshop in the north of England, the steam prototype meant to be originally ridden on railroads is now called the Rocket Bike.
We just came across this on the web and look at it as to a prehistoric motorcycle (yes, even though it is actually a bicycle from 1791), especially after reading that it’s form was inspired by animals such as horses, birds and snakes.
Invented by frenchmen, Comte Mede de Sivrac this early precursor of the bicycle => motorcycle had no steering and we can’t see any pedals, so we guess that Fred Barney would easily find its place on it and ride with style.
We just came across a cool video showing these Lawson style Kawasaki Z1000 and Z1100R being ridden to their limits back in home country Japan. The two modern classic motorcycles are going strong and the professional riders have no mercy, leaving people wondering if this is actually a vintage video or a very well made new one paying a tribute to yesterday’s great bikes.
This year’s ‘Old Indians Never, Ever Die’ vintage motorcycle rally held in Pebbleshire, Scotland between 24th and 26th of July gathered no less than 400 vintage Indians, which is very impressive to see on the old continent.
Proud of their achievement (and this was just the second time they got together the impressive number of Indian motorcycles and owners), the organizers will release a 1 hour long documentary about it. Meanwhile, you can enjoy the trailer.
This iconic picture shows how risky racing in the desert actually is. After this specific crash, Tommy Ivo and his fellow riders can only sit and wait (a lot) for help with their race bikes thrown all over the place.
They say that café racers are the ancestors of modern supersport bikes and we all know that these lasts have a reputation of attracting babes like magnets. But this vintage photo of the absolutely beautiful Laverda SF 750 motorcycle reveals that things have been this way ever since the very beginnings. And, by the way, the girls were as daring then as they are now.
Motorcycles will be part of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance for the first time this year. The event on August 16 will showcase British bikes, including the Legendary Vincent HRD V-Twins nicknamed “Gunga Din” and the John Edgar “Rollie Free” bike.