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More Patina Than You Can Handle: 1973 Triumph Hurricane X75

1973 Triumph X75 R SideI’ve gotten into the habit of occasionally posting these Triumph X75 Hurricanes, although they’re actually proto-choppers more than they are actual sportbikes. But I think they’re pretty cool, and since they’re powered by the Triumph/BSA three-cylinder engine, I think most of our readers probably like them too. 1973 Triumph X75 R Side Tank DetailStyled by icon Craig Vetter, the X75 Hurricane was intended for the US market, and the bosses at BSA felt that the original look planned for the bike was far too vanilla for the riders on this side of the pond. He might have gone a bit overboard with the Hurricane, but the result sure is distinctive and features Vetter’s signature one-piece tank-and-bodywork, along with that fan of tailpipes along the right side of the bodywork.

Just 1200 were made, using engines set aside when BSA went under and the bike was rebranded as a Triumph. 1973 Triumph X75 R Side EngineThe 741cc overhead-valve three-cylinder engine was fairly traditional in terms of design and construction, but put out a healthy 58hp and could push the bike well over 100mph and would have been perfect for blasting away from stoplights in a storm of noise. It should also turn left pretty well, but fast right turns could prove to be a bit of a problem… 1973 Triumph X75 R Side Exhaust DetailFrom the original eBay listing: 1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane for Sale

We are thrilled to offer such a unique and rare piece of motorcycle history. If you’ve got a Triumph-sized hole in your collection and want something pretty wild and very cool, this might fit the bill. To the best of our knowledge this amazing Triumph Hurricane X75 is all original and untouched. Please review pictures for overall condition and please feel free to ask any questions.

Well I have a question: “Does it run?” While it’s nice to have a bit of the model’s history, I think most buyers would appreciate a bit more information about this specific example, especially considering the $32,000 Buy It Now price. I’m pretty sure anyone even remotely interested in dropping that kind of money on a bike probably already knows a bit about the bike’s general background. 1973 Triumph X75 R FrontThis particular example is positively dripping with patina. For many folks, originality is absolutely key, and this one’s got more originality than you might be able to deal with. To be honest, it looks like it’s in need of a complete, ground-up restoration. Mechanically, at least: many collectors want to keep that original paint intact as much as possible. Me? I’m all for resto-mods and restorations: many vintage vehicles were never intended to be collectors items or last though the ages, and were built to a price, with ugly wiring, parts-bin switches, and low-quality paint on frame and bodywork.

Is this Hurricane really worth $32,000? We’ll just have to wait ’till the end of this auction and see if someone ponies up the cash for this iconic motorcycle.

-tad 1973 Triumph X75 R Side Front

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It’s Only Original Once: 1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 for Sale

1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane L Side Rear

The Hurricane X75 looks like a funky, custom chopper-styled bike, but those looks came straight from the factory, by way of styling guru Craig Vetter, who was called in to redesign the bike when the original machine was deemed way too conservative for the target audience in the USA.

1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane Dash

The distinctive integrated one-piece tank cover and side-panels came in a vivid, “look at me” orange and then there’s that wild three-into-three exhaust: on the left side of the bike, there’s nothing but a bare swingarm. Then you walk around to the right side of the bike and bam, there it is, like a giant sonic pitchfork.

1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane L Side Engine

That burly triple was actually built by BSA: when they went out of business, 1,200 of the engines were put aside for use in the new Triumph although, at Craig’s suggestion, the cylinder head did feature extended cooling fins for a beefier look. Displacing 741cc, the OHV triple put out 58hp and could push the bike over 110mph.

1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane Fork

From the original eBay listing: 1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 for Sale

We are thrilled to offer such a unique and rare piece of motorcycle history. If you’ve got a Triumph-sized hole in your collection and want something pretty wild and very cool, this might fit the bill. To the best of our knowledge this amazing Triumph Hurricane X75 is all original and untouched. Please review pictures for overall condition and feel free to ask any questions.

1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane Rear Suspension

Like most cruisers, the X75 isn’t really the most practical machine, with minimal cornering clearance, at least in right-hand turns, and very limited range from the sub-3 gallon fuel tank. But that was hardly the point: the Hurricane was a glorious posing machine, with ample stoplight performance and killer looks. In fact, one Triumph executive is reported to have said, upon seeing the bike for the first time, “My God, it’s a bloody phallus!”

So basically: mission accomplished.

1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane L Side Carbs

This isn’t the shiny, well-maintained or restored bike we like to feature, but it does look to be all original. This Hurricane is obviously going to need a full restoration to make it roadworthy, but that gives the new owner the opportunity to do it right.

-tad

1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane L Side

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1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 for Sale

1973 Triumph Hurricane X75

The Triumph Hurricane X75 was a bit of a mongrel from the word go.  Originally a BSA design, with very sleepy, Triumph Bonneville-esque style, the honchos felt it was way too conservative for American tastes.  Famous designer Craig Vetter was tasked with a stylistic redo, and the resulting bike was different, to say the least, with a very 60’s chopper style and a distinctive triple exhaust slung along the right side of the bike.  When BSA went under, 1,200 engines were put aside and the bike was rebranded as a Triumph.

1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 L Engine Detail

Because of their relative rarity and proto-cruiser status, they’ve become very valuable.  This one looks especially desirable: 1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 for Sale

This is my own personal bike that I have owned since 1973.  Each Dealer was allotted one per Dealership and it was never sold – it was only used by me on my Dealer Plate – never registered.  Time to retire and let it go.  It has been stored in my heated showroom and serviced and babied for 40 years.  This bike has NOT been painted.  You may feel free to call me at any time to learn more about this bike or to make arrangements to see it.  Ed 413 443 9407.  The buyer must make arrangements to pick it up in Massachusetts or have a shipping company handle it for you.  It must be paid via wire transfer from your bank to mine before it leaves my possession. This motorcycle is one of less than 1200 produced – Matching Numbers. Side stickers are custom but I have NOS Original black stickers for the buyer.

1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 Dash

The Buy It Now price is listed as $37,995.00, a jaw-dropping price for sure, but this one is rare, collectible, very cool, and has never been titled.  Because of the original condition and untitled status, is maybe more of a museum piece than a ridable classic, which is a real shame, considering the model was discontinued because it was unable to meet US noise restrictions…

Three cylinder motorcycles in general are pretty neat sounding machines.  Not quite as brutal as a thumping twin or single, not as smooth or refined as a four [or six!], triples make a very raw, iron-fist-in-a-velvet-glove kind of roar.

This clip [not the bike for sale] should give you a good idea what I mean: Triumph Hurricane start up and ride.

A very expensive bike but, if you’ve got a Triumph-sized hole in your collection and want something pretty wild and very cool, this might fit the bill.

-tad

1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 L Tank

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1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane

Not the first Hurricane I have posted to Classic Sport Bikes and I’m sure it’s not the last. One of my favorites when it comes to the uncommon.

1973 Triumph X75 Hurricane For Sale on eBay

Here’s what the seller says:

1973 TRIUMPH HURRICANE, VERY NICE UNRESTORED BIKE. I GOT THIS BIKE IN A TRADE DEAL AND DON’T NEED IT. BEST I CAN TELL IT’S ALL STOCK,  With the exception of repainted tank and recovered seat. IT WAS STARTED AND RUN TWO YEARS AGO BY THE ORIGINAL OWNER, GAS TANK IS DRAINED AND BATTERY WAS REMOVED. LOOK CLOSE AT THE PHOTO’S

He’s short and to the point. He doesn’t know so take a close look. That might work out in your favor if you’ve been wanting one of these but come up a little short on cash. The last couple of these I’ve seen were mint and collected a price that correlated. Maybe this one will me a little more reasonable.

~Buck

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I see your CB750 and raise you a Vetter USA: X75 Hurricane

You can’t talk about classic sport bikes and not mention how the Japanese took over the market from the British. Whenever a company sees it’s competition gaining market share they start to look outside the box. For British bikes, by the time they did this it was a little to late. In 1969 Honda turned sport bike manufacturers on their ear with the CB750 and BSA/Triumph were blind sided. They had been building bikes based on 1930’s tech. They responded by asking Craig Vetter to help design a bike to appeal to the US bikers. Then, in their great wisdom, they decided not to produce the bike Craig designed because they didn’t like it. Then, they realized that was a mistake. The Bike was finally released under the name “X75 Hurricane”. By the time the bike the US it was to late. The stupid noise laws of 1973 made the cool upswept exhaust illegal. To bad, I kinda like it.

1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 For Sale on eBay

Here’s the seller’s description.

The 1973 Triumph Hurricane X75 that you are bidding on is a ground up restoration. It starts easily and I have ridden about 120 miles to break in. It has had it’s oil changed and head re-torque. The motor was completely rebuilt by Baxter Cycle. It has the electronic ignition but I have the original points and plate. The fork trees have been repaired to eliminate the common crack issues. The pictures should say it all.

ENGINE SIZE AND CONFIGURATION: air-cooled 740 cc OHV transverse triple BORE & STROKE: bore x stroke:  67 × 70 mm (2.6 × 2.8 in) dimensions

HORSEPOWER: 58 bhp (43 kW) @ 7,500 rpm

TRANSMISSION: 5 – Speed Transmission

So my take on these bikes is this: If you have a passion for the ultra rare you must have this. Only a about 1100 were made and this one is mint. I like to go to museums and look at bikes like this but I also kinda hate that such a neat part of motorcycling history doesn’t get ridden. A lot of people will say “you need to ride that thing, that’s what it was made for”. With this bike you can have a snappy come back to that statement. You can say  “this bike was made to save BSA/Triumph not to be ridden so you can look but don’t touch”. Yeah, that’ll tell ’em. I have seen one of these in person and at first glance I didn’t care for what Craig had designed. After I really looked at close my mind was changed. I think these bikes have a custom look to them that just screams 1970’s. If I were the museum curator that had a bike this special in it you might see some pics of me ridding it through the country roads surface on the internets.

~Buck

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Triumph/BSA X75: A Beginning and An End

For my first post I wanted to find the rarest “sport” bike I could find. One that was the start of a trend and the end of a company. One that you would never likely to see again, one that was unique to the brand that developed it, one which had a back story of politics, intrigue, and showed the beginning of a change in design.

Luckily I found two.

Being a Internet motorcycle hunting addict, I had read reviews about the Triumph X75 Hurricane in Motorcycle Classics Magazine. This lead me to the history of its design and  development at the great motorcycle history site by Ed Youngblood,  I figured it was so rare that it would only be found in Museums, or personal collections. Not so.

The Triumph/BSA X75 Hurricane was a bike that was designed not in Britain but in California, taken to England by the US distributors who told the British company what it wanted. Designed by Craig Vetter of fairing fame the X75 is based on the 750 triple engine which itself was developed to combat the bikes coming out of Japan. During this time Triumph and BSA had merged into one company and was putting out one bike with two badges (think Rocket 3 / Trident). But even this merger was not going to save either of them. So this is really a bike that shows the beginning of a new design theory, and the end of a motor industry.

Looking at motorcycles instead or working I saw this being sold by a well know vendor in the mid-west, also known for limited wording in their descriptions:

1973 Triumph Hurricane

Only 2 owners. One of the finest we have ever seen in the last 12 years!

3 cylinders, 3 pipes

The number of  high resolution pictures and video will help sell the bike when few words are used. But $30,000 opening bid is steep and it would be nice to have a word or two about the state of the bike. Original? Restored? I am sure that if you are going to spend this kind of money, you will make the call. For those of us that can only dream, the pictures are very nice.

Having seen this one, I had a feeling I had seen it before, and went searching craigslist and found this one

Again few words to describe the bike, and for those who do not know the Triumph/BSA connection, might be confusing. $20,000 is also steep, but the difference between the two you could go get a couple other bikes.

Last BSA ever built. Number 44 out of 1171. 3-cylinder, air cooled. Excellent Condition, approximately 2000 miles on shop rebuild. Original paint. Has been in storage for 18 years. $20,000.00.

BB

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Tasty Triple: 1974 Triumph Trident for Sale

1974 Triumph Trident R Side

It’s pretty easy to imagine what sort of engine powers a Triumph Trident: a trident obviously offers three prongs of fish or secutor and murmillo-stabbing goodness, and the Trident has three cylinders of British charisma! Built with the US market in mind and designed to counter the immanent threat of Honda’s CB750, the Triumph/BSA 750 triple was much smoother than the parallel-twins on which it was based. It featured very ordinary specifications, with a four-speed box that was updated to a five-speed unit in 1971 and pushrod-actuated overhead valves.

1974 Triumph Trident L Side Front

This was good for 58hp and a nearly 120mph top speed. While the specifications were ordinary, the Triumph/BSA machine was the only game in town at the time if you wanted a big, four-stroke triple. And why wouldn’t you? Triples famously combine the torque of a twin and the revs of a four, with a funky, syncopated beat.

1974 Triumph Trident Clocks

Interestingly, BSA owned Triumph at the time and the triple was produced in both BSA and Triumph versions: unit construction allowed slight visual differences between the two, with the BSA engine leaned slightly forward and the Triumph’s more upright. The same engine would later find its way into the very striking X75 Hurricane as well, although the Trident is far more restrained in terms of style.

1974 Triumph Trident R Side Engine

From the original eBay listing: 1974 Triumph Trident for Sale

Kept in a climate controlled environment and out of a serious collection. Currently registered and road-ready. Converted to a cafe-style bike. Very rare aluminium tank, 1969 ray gun mufflers, cafe style seat and custom paint. This is not a barn fresh bike, starts stops and runs. Please take a look at the pictures and feel free to ask any questions you may have. This IS a matching numbers bike!

1974 Triumph Trident L Side Engine

The aluminum tank on this bike has a much more squared-off style that looks a bit more like the BSA’s original design: the Triumph’s tank was a much more traditional, teardrop Bonneville-style piece.

Personally, I’d swap that solo-seat/number-plate tail section out for a nice dual seat and some passenger pegs: this is clearly no race-bike, and would make an excellent platform for introducing that special someone to the pleasures of life on a bike.

-tad

1974 Triumph Trident L Side

 

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Three Kinds of Trouble: 1973 Triumph Hurricane

1973 Triumph Hurricane R Side

Looking like a grownup version of a Schwinn bicycle, all the Hurricane X75 needs to be full-on childhood dream embodied in steel is a sparkly vinyl banana seat. A sort of proto-factory chopper originally designed BSA, the extroverted styling was a bit of an overreaction to the original design of the bike, which was thought to be too much like the plain-Jane Bonneville for the wild-eyed, long-haired hippies over in the USA.

So Craig Vetter, no stranger to unconventional designs, was called in to do a bit of a makeover, and his signature one-piece tank-and-tail style is on display here, although you might have missed it if you were looking at the right side of the bike… With the unusual single-sided three-into-three exhaust looking like it might make rides into one, long right-hand turn.

1973 Triumph Hurricane L Rear

From the original eBay listing: 1973 Triumph X75 for Sale

CLEANING HOUSE !!!!!!! Selling my Hurricane and several other bikes. Realistically priced to sell. Happy to answer all questions. Bike is a very low mileage machine from Canada. Absolutely one of the nicest you will find. It has not run in 2 years but the fuel and carbs were drained prior to putting it on display and the engine has been turned regularly. I have all the Canadian import paperwork but no title. I’m more than happy to get a title for an additional $500 to cover the fees for this machine or I can give you all the Canadian paperwork and you do it yourself.

When BSA went out of business, just 1200 three-cylinder engines were put aside and the X75 was rebranded as a Triumph. These are very collectable these days, and it’s easy to see why: right out of the box, they look right and have plenty of performance.

1973 Triumph Hurricane Engine

Bidding is very active on this bike, with a couple days left on the auction and the Reserve Not Met at $17,200. I’d prefer a few more high-res photos of the bike, considering the price bracket we’re playing in here, but that close-up of the stamped engine serial number suggests that the bike is pretty clean. I’ve seen asking prices much higher than this, and it looks very solid, so worst-case scenario sees a paint job and a light mechanical refresh.

So depending on where this ends up when the hammer falls, you could think of it as a bargain!

-tad

1973 Triumph Hurricane L Side Dark

 

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1967 Harley-Davidson ERS Replica

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A full fairing, rear sets, and a racing number are all we need in life. This 1967 Harley-Davidson Sprint replica has all of those, so we are happy, more so because they added a license plate and headlight.

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From the seller

Full fiberglass fairing, gas tank and seat. Tank has been sealed with Caswell’s tank sealer. Neverthesless I typically use only non-ethanol fuel with this bike. She is also fitted with clip-on bars and adjustable rear sets. The bike is light weight and handles like a dream.

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The bike is track ready and safety wired, yet it is also street legal and has a clear California title plus current registration. The headlight is in the nose of the fairing and there is a side mount tail light/license plate bracket behind the right rear shock. The electrical system is OEM with a new voltage regulator and new battery. Wheels are shouldered Excel alloy rims with stainless spokes. The front brake is a dual leading shoe unit from a 1973 Sprint that stops like a disc with one finger operation. New rear shocks and a gold race chain.
The motor is a 1968 250cc short stroke with around 180 miles on it. It was built with a new top end, piston, valves and guides. Engine work was done by Don Thut, master technician who worked on the Bonneville speed record bikes for Glendale Harley Davidson.

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This 1967 Harley-Davidson Sprint is dressed up like a CRTT, with the TT being Time Trial. National championships were fought over short tracks, long short tracks, and road courses. For a couple of weekends a year, you would put a full fairing on your bike and make both left and right turns. You can take this one home and during the week, ride it on the street, and on the weekend take it to the Track. I call that a dual sport. BB

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1958 Horex Resident

Horex was a German Motorcycle manufacture which was started by the Rex glassware company in Bad HomburgGermany in 1960, so you can see where the name came from. They originally purchased their 4-stroke engines from Columbus, until Horex merged with Columbus in 1925. This 1958 Horex Resident offered up over on eBay.de is something you may never see here in the States from a company that disappeared, but may be re-appear.

Not much from the seller

This is a nice Horex Resident 350 converted to sport style. Engine is running, no paperwork. Check photos you get what you see.

Like many manufactures in Europe, Horex was unable to produce motorcycles for many years in the late  ‘30’s and early ‘40’s. When they did start production up again, their most popular bike was a 350cc single called the Regina. Horex as able to sell over 18,000 of the. During this time they also offered a 400cc and 500cc Straight-two, one cylinder in front of the other. This Resident was first offered in 1955 and replaced the popular Regina.

The  350cc engine offers and over square 77×75 single cylinder, with a 7.1:1 CR which generates 24hp at 6250rpm. The twin port exhaust is a hold over from pre-war racers which used a twin port in an attempt to keep the exhaust valves as cool as possible. The single carb looks to be by Bing, and for a 350cc could likely be as large as 26mm. The seller claims “converted to sport style”, but I am interpreting that as a Café racer, and not tuning to the engine.

Mercedes-Benz purchased the Horex company in 1960 and stopped all Motorcycle production. There appears to be a revival of the Horex name, so you may have seen some concept motorcycles with a supercharged Horex engine. So if you want to be in the know of German Manufactures, this Horex offered surprisingly on German eBay, would be interesting to own. BB

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