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Lot 594: 1960 Royal Enfield 499cc Fury

Pioneer, Vintage & Collectors' Motorcycles, Bonhams (27 April 2008)

With the introduction of the Fury in 1959, Royal Enfield at last had a 500cc sports single to take on BSA’s Gold Star and Velocette’s Venom, though sadly for UK enthusiasts it was for the US export market only. Based on the latest, ‘big head’ Bullet, the Fury came with a tuned engine incorporating an enlarged inlet port, raised compression ratio and lighter flywheels for a claimed maximum power output of 40bhp. An Amal GP carburettor was standard equipment, though hardly ideal for the bike’s intended off-road role because of its lack of ‘tick over’, and the Fury was available with or without lights. Enfield sales literature talked about a top speed in the region of 95-100mph, which should have been easily attainable.

Only 191 Furies were made between 1959 and 1963; this example being one despatched to Royal Enfield distributor Tozer & Kemsley in the USA on 18th June 1960. The machine was supplied without road equipment for competition purposes, as most were, but has been restored with road use in mind. One of a consignment of machines brought back to the UK many years ago, it was purchased by Alan Hitchcock, of marque specialists Hitchcock’s Motorcycles, and restored by Enfield specialist, Steve Hart. The completed Fury was featured in Classic Bike magazine (November 1995 edition) for whom it was road-tested by Mick Duckworth.

Purchased by the current owner - a Royal Enfield collector - in November 1998, the machine has been kept in centrally heated storage, unused, ever since. An example of one of the rarest and most desirable of post-war Royal Enfield’s, it is presented in excellent condition in every respect and offered with expired MoT (April 1996) and Swansea V5 registration document.

Lot Details
Auction Pioneer, Vintage & Collectors' Motorcycles
Bonhams, Stafford
Lot Number594
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price£5500
Hammer Price (inc premium)£6325
Condition rating
Registration numberGFO 690
Chassis number16232
Engine number3472
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors