Yet again, Norton Motorcycles is in trouble. But instead of focusing on the negative, let’s go back in history to a time when someone was trying to save the name. That someone was Kenny Dreer, who started restoring Nortons at his shop called Vintage Rebuilds (VR) near Portland, Oregon. As the 1990s came to an end, he started building his own variant of the Commando, which he called the Norton VR880, and he ended up raising millions to try and bring Norton back.
Unfortunately, it didn’t work out, and less than 50 were built. I’ve seen people claim that the production run was exactly 48 but I can’t find official confirmation of the number. A much smaller number (possibly between 4 and 6) were built with hand-hammered aluminum bodywork from Evan Wilcox. The VR880, also called the Sprint Special, was released in ’99 with newly cast and manufactured parts, as well as a bored out 880cc twin.
This VR880 has approximately 2,000 miles on it, and it’s said to run “fast and strong”. The sale includes the original purchase agreement (signed by Dreer) as well as a dyno test. I’ve featured one other VR880 with alloy bodywork – bidding got up to an impressive $26,900 on eBay but it did not meet reserve. Let’s see how this one does!
Find this Kenny Dreer special for sale in East Meadow, New York with an unmet opening bid of $15,000 here on eBay.
This bike-uriousity brought to you by Robert B!