A packed audience of over 1,000 people in the fabulous surroundings of the BMW Museum in Munich, Germany, witnessed a total sell out auction of the Willy Neutkens Collection of BMW Motorcycles on Saturday 28 November, 2009.
The Collection comprised 94 Lots (91 motorcycles; an Ural side-car; a BMW stationary engine; and a wooden model) and carried a pre-sale estimate of Euro 590,000 - 780,000. By the time the last lot was knocked down, the auction totalled a premium inclusive Euro 1,038,400 (?944,191), with 100% sold by lot and by value.
Customers from across the world participated in the sale, with many making the pilgrimage to the home of BMW to attend in person. Bidders came from as far afield as Australia, New Zealand, USA and Hong Kong, with many going on to buy some of the exceptional motorcycles on offer.
A clear highlight of the sale was the 1924 BMW 493cc R32 (Lot 40) which was at the heart of a five way bidding battle between three continents, eventually realising Euro 109,250 against a pre-sale estimate of Euro 33,000 - 45,000.
Bids also came from the BMW Museum, host of today's sale, which secured the Ex-Works ISDT 1953 BMW 594cc R67/2 - Lot 76 - for Euro 26,450 (estimate Euro 19,000 - 22,000). This historic competition machine beautifully complements the other motorcycles in their own impressive collection.
One of the sale's most emotional and charming purchases involved a lady bidder who secured the 1982 BMW 649cc R65LS (Lot 23) for Euro 2,530. Having bought the motorcycle when it was new - proceeding to cover an incredible 170,000km over 14 years on Continental tours - she was delighted to be reunited with it so many years later.
In all, over 320 customers had registered to bid, making this one of the most successful sales for the Bonhams motorcycle department.
Malcolm Barber, Bonhams CEO and auctioneer on the day commented, "The BMW archivists, directors and management team at the Museum worked closely with our company following instructions from the Neutkens family to market and offer their collection for sale. The combined strengths of our respective companies ensured full marketing, an informative catalogue and a perfect setting to obtain this fabulous result."
Fred Jakobs, BMW's Archivist for motorcycles at the museum commented, "I was delighted with the outcome of today's sale, it was a pleasure for my company to work closely with Bonhams, they presented a first class auction. We too were delighted to have acquired the Ex-Works, ISDT, 1953 BMW R67/2BMW for our collection. It has come home and will be on display here at the museum next year it is the grandfather of our Enduro bikes".
Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's oldest and largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son and Neale UK. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street, and Knightsbridge, and a further seven throughout the UK. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York and Boston in the USA; and Switzerland, France, Monaco, Australia, Hong Kong and Dubai. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 50 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments, go to www.bonhams.com. (January 2009)