1986 Laverda SFC 1000 – $26,000 (SOLD)

SELLER SAYS: SFC in excellent condition. Mikuni flat-slide carbs. Front brakes upgraded to 4-pot Brembos. LED indicators. Work done by Redax. Contact John on 0429 xxx xxx SOLD (Beverley, WA).

EDITOR’S COMMENT: Most exotic-bike lovers already know the headline acts from Laverda. The 1974 Laverda 750 SFC twin was beautiful, fast and exotic (and expensive). For our money, it just might be the most beautiful motorbike ever made — and if you can find one nowadays, you should buy it. (You might need to sell your house though.) The slightly later (1976) 1000cc Jota triple was bigger, faster, heavier, just as wild, and just as orange. The triple-cylinder SFC 1000, like this beautiful one of John’s, came later still and was one of the company’s last hurrahs before the marque disappeared under a mountain of bikes from Japan. (Clearly the company never ran out of orange paint. They must have bought a lot!) But our favourite Laverda story goes way back when it was still a little family company trying to have a crack at the big time. Their headline bike in the early 1950s was a 75cc four-stroke single. In 1952, twenty little Laverdas were entered in Italy’s prestigious 1400km Milan-Taranto endurance road race. They finished first, second, third, fourth and fifth in class — and took 16 of the top 20 places. That one race set the tone and owning a Laverda became hyper-cool and stayed that way until, well, 2021 so far. Like their crop harvester cousins — yes, Laverda was and is a farm machinery company before and after bikes — they were over-engineered to be tough as nails and robust as rocks. We’d be happy to take this one home, any time.