Birmingham, Alabama - Some say that more important than the intrinsic or rarity value of a classic vehicle is its provenance, i.e who owned it before.
All we know is that adding the name of Steve McQueen, arguably the world’s best-known petrolhead, to the provenance of anything with wheels is enough to double its value instantly.
Which is why this well-kept but not pristine 1970 Husqvarna 400 Cross is of special interest - its provenance includes documentary proof that this is the actual bike the King of Cool rode in the 1971 cult movie On any Sunday, the only motorcycle film ever to win an Oscar.
And it’ll be up for grabs in a Bonhams auction of classic bikes and cars at the Barber Motorsport Museum in Birmingham on 6 October. Expect the bidding to be fast and furious - so much so that not even Bonhams' experts will hazard a guess as to how much it will go for.
Because there’s more:
Not only is this motorcycle a bona fide film star in its own right, but what makes it even more special is where McQueen got it. The California Department of Motor Vehicles documentation included with the Husqvarna shows that McQueen’s production company Solar Productions bought the bike at the end of the 1970 motocross season from one B Aberg.
And when current owner, Santa Barbara dentist and Husqvarna collector Del Pinho, was researching the bike’s history, he confirmed that this is indeed the works bike (or one of them, anyway) with which Swedish motocross legend Bengt Aberg won the 1970 500cc world championship, his second consecutive title for Husqvarna.
In fact, he says he only found out later who the bike’s second owner was. And if that’s not enough provenance for you, the file includes McQueen’s entry form for the 1970 Saddleback 500 Senior race and a ‘lucky penny’ - an uncirculated 1960 one-cent coin that Pinho found tucked away inside one of the Husky’s frame rails.
Scroll down for an epic five-minute clip from On any Sunday with Mcqueen on the Husqvarna, together with Malcolm Smith and Mert Lawwill: