New Atlas reports Honda built four pre-production CB750s in 1968 for promotional purposes, and this one – of two survivors – just sold at auction in the UK for £161,000, or about US $263,725. That makes it the most expensive Japanese motorcycle every sold at auction. “The bike was first shown publicly in Europe at the Brighton Motorcycle show on April 5, 1969, also appearing on the cover of the May, 1969 issue of Motorcycle Mechanics. The auction house claims that this bike does not share a single part with the production model and has been in the same private collection for the past 35 years. It was undergoing a restoration when the owner passed away.”
Meanwhile, John Lennon’s 1969 Honda Z50A “Monkeybike” gaveled out at £57,500 (US$94,187) to become one of the 10 most expensive Japanese motorcycles ever sold at auction.
Both bikes sold for substantially more than the auction house had estimated: $263k is still a ways behind Jack Ehret’s Vincent Black Lightning, which became the most expensive bike sold at auction when it went for $929,000 at Bonham’s last Las Vegas auction.