Ex-works MV Agusta 500/4 going under the hammer

Classic race bikes look for big money:

| March/April 2007

  • Bonhams-MV
    Ex-John Surtees 500cc MV Agusta is expected to fetch upwards of $350,000 at auction.

  • Bonhams-MV


From the early 1950s to the late 1960s, MV Agusta won every race that was worth winning.

Machines raced by the legendary Italian factory team are among the rarest and most desirable racing motorcycles ever made. All surviving examples are held either in museums or private collections and only extremely rarely is one ever offered for public sale.

But this machine — frame number 1104, engine number 4 — is up for grabs to anyone with a big enough bank balance at The International Classic MotorCycle Show in Stafford, England, on April 29, 2007.

When the contents of the MV race shop were sold off some years ago following a lengthy period in storage, only two machines of the pre-1965 period were assembled and complete, the remainder being dismantled. The main purchasers of MV’s heritage were Robert Iannucci in the United States, Ubaldo Elli in Italy and John Surtees in England.

This genuine factory race machine, purchased directly from Surtees by the current owner, accords with the specification employed by the MV Agusta factory team between 1957 and 1960, while the short-stroke four-cylinder engine is of the type used between 1954 and 1961.

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