Looking for sky's-the-limit examples of two-wheeled art? It doesn't get much wilder than this list of ten money-no-object examples of what happens when exotic materials meet outrageous powerplants.
To make this list, these motorcycles must be produced serially (ie, no one-offs), and currently be available to consumers.
Here are 10 glorious, two-wheeled ways to rid yourself of those pesky lottery winnings:
10. Confederate B120 Wraith - $92,500
Confederate's $80,000 Black Flag is one seriously pricey bike, but it's far from the most expensive.
Number ten on our list of the most expensive motorcycles in the world is the Black Flag's stablemate, the Confederate B120 Wraith. It may not boast the most killer performance (125 hp from an air-cooled twin), but the U.S.-built Wraith's assemblage of aircraft grade billet aluminum and carbon fiber make it a force to be reckoned with in area of eye-popping design.
9. Vyrus 987 C3 4V - $103,769
Italian bike builder Vyrus (pronounced Vee-rus) specializes in novel engineering designs, and their Ducati-powered creations start at a mere €29,080... but move all the way up to their 987 C3 4V V (Volumex) model, and you'll be looking at a €75,835 premium-- or, $103,769 at today's exhange rate.
Powered by a supercharged 1,200cc Ducati engine that produces 211 horsepower, this bike weighs in at only 350 pounds. The motorcycle pictured here was ordered by a customer for racing, yet wanted the crash-friendly Alutex fairing replaced with carbon fiber-- which ran the price up to €84,000-- or roughly $115,000!
The 200 horsepower MV Agusta F4CC was a no-holds barred motorcycle inspired by CEO Claudio Castiglioni's one-off personal project, and the six-figure sportbike was to be limited to 100 units, worldwide. Problem was, an unexpected global recession put a lid on wild discretionary purchases, Harley-Davidson purchased (and since sold MV Agusta back to Mr. Castiglioni), and those 100 units never completely sold out-- forcing F4CCs to languish in showrooms. You can still buy a brand new F4CC (which includes a €15,000 Girard-Perregaux Laureato EVO3 F4CC wristwatch), and you can probably get away with spending far less than the original $120,000 asking price, to boot.
7. NCR MH TT (Mike Hailwood) - $130,000
Only 12 of these tribute bikes were built to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Mike Hailwood's triumphant victory at the Isle of Man, and its 130 horsepower engine boasts a billet crankshaft while its titanium frame weighs only 11 pounds. It may not be the fastest bike on this list, but its retro silhouette is certainly one of the most understated and elegant.
6. NCR Leggera 1200 Titanium Special - $145,000
NCR is famous for its race bikes, but this Ducati Hypermotard-based effort represents their first ever street-legal offering. Weighing only 328 pounds total, the Leggera boasts suspension developed directly with Öhlins, brakes developed through Brembo, carbon fiber BST wheels, and a titanium frame that weighs only 10.6 pounds... but where's the license plate bracket?
5. Icon Sheene - $172,000
Another tribute bike to a legendary racer, the Icon Sheene pays homage to British world champ Barry Sheene. Each of these 52 bikes features a hand-painted image of a playing card, and its 1,400cc Suzuki engine receives extra motivation from a Garrett turbocharger running at .4 bar. Producing 250 horsepower, Icon called their Sheene the most powerful production motorcycle in the world at the time it was released... and at £107,000 (approximately $172,000 using today's conversion rates), it's still one of the most expensive.
4. MTT Turbine Streetfighter - $175,000
It doesn't get much more excessive than this: putting the V8-powered Boss Hoss motorcycles to shame, MTT's Streetfighter packs nothing less than a Rolls-Royce-Allison turbine-- the same sort of powertrain you'd find in a helicopter-- that drives 320 horsepower to a Pirelli Diablo 240mm rear tire. A tubular aluminum frame, rear-mounted camera with LCD color display, and carbon fiber fairings come standard, but serious speed freaks will tick the box that upgrades to a 420 horsepower turbine that produces 500 lb-ft of torque... yikes!
3. NCR Macchia Nera Concept - $225,000
Designer Aldo Drudi was responsible for the naked, angular shapes of the Machhia Nera concept, and this bike-- whose name curiously translates to "Black Spot"-- is powered by a Ducati 998R engine that produces 185 horsepower. The clincher? The whole bike weighs only 297 pounds.
NCR's nearly quarter-million dollar M16 weighs in at only 319 pounds (without gas), and features a carbon fiber frame, ceramic matrix composite brakes, and specially tuned Öhlins suspension. This bad boy's price starts at $160,000, which doesn't include the $72,500 Ducati Desmosedici you'll need to snag in order to pull the motor from... good luck with that!
1. Ecosse Titanium Series FE Ti XX - $300,000
Ecosse's brawny Heretic lineup is coming to an end, and the outgoing flagship Series RR bike ($275,000) will soon be capped off by the even more exclusive (and pricey) FE Ti XX, which will see 13 units produced.
The new world's most expensive motorcycle will be powered by a 2,409cc billet engine with Ecosse's highest ever horsepower figure: 225 hp at the rear wheel. Carbon fiber finishes abound, the saddle comes from high-end Italian leathermaker Berluti, and the exhaust pipes have a ceramic media shot-peened finish on grade-9 titanium... but this ultimate Ecosse won't be king forever. When it's released, the upcoming ES1 model will usurp the crown with a $350,000 price tag. It's tough keeping up with the Joneses, eh?