You dont have to be a millionaire to get into motorbike collecting and if you buy wisely there are bikes which are great investments and which will only appreciate in value say H&H Classics
, one of the UKs leading classic car and bike auction houses.
H&H Classics first sale of the year at Donington Park on February 22nd (bikes) and 23rd (cars) features both motorcycles and cars. Among the most interesting bikes for sale are four that would make outstanding investments says Mark Bryan, Head of Motorcycle Sales for H&H. These are a Velocette Thruxton, a Cotton 250, a 1926 AJS G8 and a 1949 Scott Squirrel.
1968 Velocette Thruxton
In at No Reserve a Velocette Thruxton in unrestored condition heads the list of desirable investments. Last year H&H sold one for £20,000, a world record price. It made twice the pre-sale estimate, and set a new world record for an unrestored bike of this type.
The Velocette was the last great British single, outlasting other British marques by almost a decade. The Velocette Thruxton lived long enough to race against the first of the modern Japanese superbikes. But in 1971 Velocette shut down its Hall Green, Birmingham factory and quietly went out of business.
This great survivor of a time when British motorcycles raced successfully, is being put to auction with no reserve.
Mark Bryan, Head of Motorcycles at H&H says: It is super rare to find a bike in this condition and its in running order!!. This motorcycle is a very real and rare discovery.
The Thruxton was a true factory-built cafe racer. Its immediate predecessor, the Venom, had already made a good name for itself in performance circles despite running an antiquated 500cc pushrod motor. In 1961 a works-supported team of riders set the world 24-hour speed record, and in '64 another Venom took a class win at the Thruxton 500-mile endurance race, crown jewel of England's popular and hotly contested Production roadracing series.
That victory gave Velocette a great excuse to hot-rod the Venom and make the resulting 1965 Thruxton an even better race bike. It did not take long for success to find the Thruxton. Another class win in the 1965 500-miler made for a great debut, and in '67 a pair of Thruxtons finished 1-2 in the inaugural running of the Production TT at the Isle of Man. Before production ceased, Velocette made approximately 1100 Thruxtons.
1937 Cotton 250
Super rare, 1937 Cotton 250cc in oily rag condition at £4,000 to £5,000. Very clever engineering.
The Cotton Motor Company, based in Gloucester was founded by Frank Willoughby Cotton in 1918. He ran the company until his retirement in 1953. The company was reconstituted as E. Cotton (Motorcycles) Ltd, and traded until 1980. The marque was later resurrected in the late 1990s by a business which manufactured replicas of earlier machines.
By 1913, F.W. Cotton had engaged in hill climbs and trials, and recognised the limitations of the diamond frame design, little different from a bicycle. He designed his own, and had examples made by Levis. In 1914 he patented the "triangulated frame" to protect his design that was a Cotton feature until the Second World War. The First World War intervened and it was not until 1918 that the Cotton Motor Company was founded; the first Cotton motorcycle appeared in 1920.
In 1922 a Cotton came fifth in the 350 cc Junior TT and the following year, won the1923 Isle of Mann TT, averaging 55.73 miles per hour (89.69 km/h), Cotton motorcycles took a second and third in the Ultra Lightweight TT, and a second in the Lightweight TT. They only managed a second place in the 1925 Junior TT, and a second place in the lightweight TT but in the 1926 races were awarded the first three places in the Lightweight TT.These victories helped establish Cotton as a race-winning machine, with exceptional handling for its time.
1926 AJS G8
1926 AJS G8 the best AJS restoration Ive ever seen says Mark Bryan of H&H. Just £12,000 to £12,500.
AJS was the name used for cars and motorcycles made by A. J. Stevens & Co. Ltd, in Wolverhampton from 1909 to 1931. The company held 117 motorcycle world records. After the firm was sold, the name continued to be used by Matchless, Associated Motorcycles and Norton-Villiers.
This particular bike boasts matching numbers and is on its original registration. Built over a period of 2 years from a box of bits by an AJS enthusiast.
1949 Scott Squirrel
A 1949 Scott Squirrel at £4,000 to £5,000, a barn find. Scotts two-strokes were pioneers, the fastest thing around the Isle of Mann TT course in the 1930s. An original condition bike with original registration and complete with buff logbook.
The Squirrel name was used for Scott motorcycles since 1921 but with the death of the founder Alfred Angus Scott in 1923 the unorthodox Scott two-stroke motorcycles began to become more conventional.
Launched at the 1926 Earls Court motorcycle show, the Flying Squirrel was expensive - nearly twice the cost of a sporting four-stroke motorcycle of the time.