Highlights

  • Fresh concours restoration
  • Won October 2019 Motoroclassica Concours
  • Brough’s first JAP twin cylinder 1000cc model
  • Predecessor to the infamous Brough SS100
  • 1 of 2 known to exist

This shockingly rare 1922 Brough Superior Mark 1 is one of two known survivors of the earliest of George Brough’s magnificent creations. As befits such an important motorcycle, this machine has received a restoration that can only be described as magnificent. The Mark 1 was George Brough’s dream machine, imagined during the dark days of World War I in conversations with fellow serviceman George Patchett about what their ideal motorcycle would be. George Brough built his first Brough Superior motorcycles in 1919 with seed money from his father, William, and quickly proved himself not only a consummate PR genius and showman but one of the most gifted motorcycle stylists in history.

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His concepts were sound in the early 20th century: source the best possible components available to build the fastest, best-handling and best-looking motorcycle in the world. His vision inspired customers and the trade alike, and he demanded special treatment from his component suppliers, specifying particular materials for his engines and gearboxes from JAP and Sturmey-Archer. After all, it reflected well that the fastest and most elegant production motorcycles in the world used their engines and gearboxes. The Brough Superior Mark 1 used a 1000cc V-twin engine, and could be ordered either with the overhead-valve JAP “90-Bore” engine or the Swiss M.A.G. inlet-over-exhaust (F-head) motor. The 90-Bore engine was a racing design and a very early example of an overhead-valve V-twin, with valves placed vertically in the cast-iron one-piece cylinders. Oiling was accomplished with a mix of a Best & Lloyd drip feed to the crankshaft and an auxiliary hand pump on the fuel tank, while, internally, a clever system of disc valves opened internal passageways under crankcase suction for “mist” oiling. It proved a good system, and the 90-Bore motor was reasonably reliable and very fast for the era. A 3-speed Sturmey-Archer gearbox uses Sturmey-Archer’s own single-spring clutch, which can handle the power with a sidecar attached. The construction details of the Mark 1, with its familiar deeply valanced fenders and extravagant nickel-plated tank, are a picture of the elegance George Brough sought and achieved from this very first effort.

Arrangements to purchase this vehicle can be made directly by contacting Mecum representative Rob Williams by phone or text at (262) 236-7705 or by email at rwilliams@mecum.com.

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