Is this crate-trained 1986 Laverda SFC worth the hype?

Parallels between the art world and the automotive world exist, but you can’t exactly drive a banana duct-taped to a wall. Vehicles carry a certain amount of utility and usability a painting or sculpture will never have, but is this 1986 Laverda SFC 1000 worth more because it has been treated like fine art?

Low mileage is one thing, and that typically carries a premium in the marketplace for collector cars and motorcycles . However, new-in-box is a whole different ball of wax that has quite a small data set from which we can draw conclusions. That data suggests an increase in prices despite the knowledge that such a profound lack of use can be just as damaging as high use, in some situations.

The SFC 1000 is a shining example of everything the Laverda stood for. The Italian company’s motorcycles were always focused on performance, without neglecting style. The SFC took that passion for racing and performance to the extreme—a race motorcycle for the street. First introduced in 1968, the SFC was merely the competition bike being sold to the public.

This example is headed across the block at Mecum’s Las Vegas sale January 21–26. The 981-cc three-cylinder engine is typically the highlight of this rare bike, but that is easily overshadowed by the curiosity concerning the fact that it’s never removed from the crate. Like an action figure.

1986 Laverda FSC 1000 crated

“Bikes like this always seem to be the cherry on top of a collection,” says Kyle Bowen, manager of Hagerty’s motorcycle program. “Even if they aren’t a desirable model like this Laverda, the rarity and uniqueness of a motorcycle that is still new in box is undeniable.”

Sadly, the fact this motorcycle is still in the crate over a quarter-century on potentially means it will never be returned to the road. It might require nearly a full mechanical restoration to undo corrosion and material degradation damage from this kind of extended storage.

Will that matter to the new buyer? Likely not. Hagerty valuation analyst James Hewitt expects this Laverda to bring between $27,000 and $35,000, significantly more than a similar condition bike not in its factory crate. 

This bike is truly an opportunity to buy yourself a perpetual Christmas morning, where there is a new toy in your garage every day. Maybe you would prefer a motorcycle you can ride without destroying its value proposition? Let us know in the comments below.

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