In 1931, Motor Cycling magazine journalist Dennis May called the Brough Superior SS100 “the fastest privately owned machine in the world suitable for road use” after he hit 106 MPH on it.
As a token of his affection for the beastly 1928 model, he also gave it a nickname: Moby Dick.
If that sounds like a lot of wasted ink and praise for a bike that could barely top the century mark in speed, it’s worth remembering that high-end Mercedes were barely topping 130 MPH in ‘31. It’s also worth noting that the Moby motorcycle — which was outfitted with larger cylinders and finer-tuned 1,142cc twin engines than standard Brough Superior SS100ls — is up for auction.
Moby Dick (7 images)
After passing through the hands of a number of owners, the bike was fully restored in 1997 and was last sold in 2011 for $333,210, making it one of the 10 most valuable motorcycles in history. This time, RM-Sotheby’s estimates Moby will fetch at least $550,000 and as much as $770,000.
If you don’t want the special SS100 to become your white whale, here’s where to bid.