- Written by webmin
No front fender, no shirt and an open-face helmet – that’s how Steve McQueen rolled on the August 23, 1971, cover of Sports Illustrated, wheelie-ing the legendary Husqvarna 400 Cross.
The 1970 and 1971 400s are now the most prized Huskys among collectors, and anything with a connection to Steve McQueen is like auction gold. So while it’s a little surprising to see a dirt bike headlining Bonhams sale of “Exceptional Motorcycles & Related Memorabilia,” May 14, at the Quail Lodge in Carmel, California, it’s understandable when you learn that the bike happens to be the same Husky on which McQueen rode shirtless on the now famous SI cover.
Last we’d heard, the ’71 400 belonged to famous boxing promoter Tony Holden and was on display in a museum in Miami, Oklahoma. Bonhams tells us it was sold from McQueen’s estate back in 1984 at Harrah’s Auto Collection in Las Vegas. The Husky will be sold with a wooden trunk of accessories owned by McQueen, including numerous racing trophies.
Last year’s sale at Quail Lodge saw a rare 1910 Royal Pioneer Single sell for $92,000, the only known surviving 1914 Flanders Model D Twin – formerly owned by L.A. newspaper scion Otis Chandler – sell for $78,200, and a 1913 Flying Merkel Single Board Track Racer sell for $64,975.
The Bonhams auction is held in conjunction with The Quail Motorcycle Gathering, a display of classic sports and racing bikes lined up on the lawn of the Driving Range at Quail Lodge Resort & Golf Club.