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Lot 338: Egli-Vincent Godet

Motorcycle and Motorcars, Bonhams & Butterfields (14 November 2009)

One of the world's best known motorcycle frame makers, Swiss engineer Fritz Egli built his first frame in what would turn out to be a highly successful attempt to tame the wayward handling of his Vincent v-win racer. The Vincent used a spine-type frame and so did Egli, though his was tubular rather than box-section and all-welded rather than bolted-up in construction. This trademark large-diameter spine has been a feature of virtually all Egli's frames made since, proving adaptable to all types of motorcycle engine layout from British singles to across-the-frame Japanese fours. These days widely regarded as a marque in its own right, it is the Egli-Vincent v-twin, with its exciting combination of classic power and modern chassis technology, which has proved to be his most enduring legacy.

As Fritz Egli moved on to other projects, the machines continued to be produced in limited numbers by other specialists, and this example is the work of Frenchman Patrick Godet, the former FIM Coupe d'Endurance champion and world famous Vincent specialist. Commissioned on April 3rd 2006, this machine was built entirely by Godet, under special license from Fritz Egli, and imported via normal channels on July 24th 2008. It was delivered by Air France to Port of Los Angeles and US import taxes have been paid (receipts available). Registered in France with a manufacturing date of 1968, it has never been registered in California, although it should be relatively easy to do since the French Certificat d'Immatriculation is present and all paperwork is in order.

This machine's detailed specification is far to lengthy to list fully here, but highlights include a 1,330cc Vincent engine boasting Nikasil-coated aluminum cylinder liners; lead-free compatible valve seats; Mark II camshafts; multi-plate dry clutch; electric starter by Francois Grosset; 12-volt Alton alternator; electronic ignition; and Mikuni VM carburetors. The hand-made exhaust pipes and muffler are of stainless steel and all the aforementioned components are new.

The chassis main spine is fabricated from 100mm CDS with the smaller tubes made from the French equivalent of Reynolds 531, all TIG welded and nickel plated. Ceriani 35mm GP forks prop up the front end with Maxton shocks at the rear, while the brakes are Fontana 230mm magnesium four-leading-shoe at the front and Black Lightning type at the rear. The aluminum control levers are by Amal and the instruments by Smiths, the latter comprising a 5" Chronometric speedometer and 3" tachometer. Akront aluminum rims are laced to the hubs with stainless steel polished spokes fitted with nickel nipples, while the tyres are Bridgestone BT45s. Chassis fastenings are metric and the engine's are Imperial.

The odometer's circa 660 miles recorded is the actual distance covered since construction (the break-in period is 1,000 miles). This machine has been ridden only by the owner, a 55-year old licensed architect with a lifetime background of automotive restoration and motorcycle building experience. He currently owns six motorcycles, including Harley-Davidson, Ducati, Laverda, Honda and Vincent.

Presented in superb condition, this most desirable of superbike 'specials' is offered with the aforementioned documentation, a full listing of its specification, and detailed maintenance/operating instructions.

Lot Details
Auction Motorcycle and Motorcars
Bonhams & Butterfields, Los Angeles
TypeMotorcycle
Lot Number338
Estimate$90000-$120000
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price$82000
Hammer Price (inc premium)$95940
Year1968
Condition rating0
Registration number
Mileage-
Chassis number
Engine numberEV904
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors