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Pope’s Harley-Davidson heading for auction

Published: 27 November 2014

Updated: 27 November 2014

A Harley-Davidson Softail Classic which was signed by former Pope Benedict and then later received by the current Pope Francis will be sold for charity by auction house Bonhams in Paris on February 5.

The bike was part of the celebrations to mark Harley-Davidson’s 110th anniversary with two commemorative petrol tanks presented to Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. They were then signed and returned to the American headquarters of the firm and mounted on the motorcycles. One remains in the Harley museum and the other was used as part of the 110th celebrations where it was due to be presented to the Pope in 2013. 

However, in an unforeseen change to the papacy, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI abdicated in January 2013. Subsequently this saw the FLSTC Heritage Softail Classic presented to the newly inaugurated Pope, his holiness Pope Francis.

“It’s an honour to have been selected to sell this fantastic machine. We expect a lot of interest, and hope to raise some spirited bidding for the very worthy charity selected,” said Ben Walker, International Director for Bonhams Motorcycle Department.

“In February 2014, Bonhams sold 1,585cc Harley-Davidson Dyna Super Glide signed by His Holiness Pope Francis. Now we’re delighted to offer a motorcycle received by both Pope Francis and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI; it was present during a pivotal period in the papacy of the Catholic Church, and we expect a lot of interest in it.”

Entered at no reserve, this unique motorcycle will have its auction proceeds donated to Stowarzyszenie Przyjazny Świat Dziecka (Friendly World Association), a Polish volunteer, independent, non-profit organization that offers care and support to children and families in need.

The Harley-Davidson will be sold on February 5, 2015 as part of Bonhams’ Les Grandes Marques du Monde sale at the Grand Palais in Paris.

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