1977 Suzuki RE-5 Rotary Zero Mile Example

1977 Suzuki RE-5 Rotary Zero Mile Example

This ad is marked as Sold


Lot No: 135

Zero-mile example of one of the rarest Japanese street bikes.

1977 Suzuki RE-5 Rotary

Frame no. RE515866
Engine no. RE515299

After taking small steps at the beginning of the 1960s, followed by bigger strides as the decade closed, the Japanese motorcycle industry really picked up the pace in the 1970s and rose to world dominance.
The Big Four all made significant advances, each trying to out-do the other in a rush of new, exciting models like the two-wheeled world had never seen. One of the most interesting was the Suzuki RE5
Rotary, the first – and so far only – attempt to produce a Wankel-engined motorcycle in large numbers.

While the single-rotor 497cc engine was simple in theory, with significantly fewer moving parts than a piston-powered counterpart, its support systems were complex for the time. Besides a traditional wet-sump oiling system, the RE5 needed a secondary oil tank and lines that led to the carburetor, which then mixed oil with the fuel – not unlike a two-stroke's automatic oil injector – to lubricate the rotor seals.
The carburetor itself was very automotive-looking, a massive two-barrel downdraft unit with no less than five cables attached plus a variety of linkages. Even the exhaust system was complex.

Because a rotary generates more heat than a conventional motor, the RE5 required a finned collector box that then routed gases to twin exhaust pipes that were double-walled and had grilled intakes at the front to catch cooling air and direct it along the length of the mufflers.

Despite its advanced features, the RE5 worked no better than Suzuki's conventional four-cylinder GS750.

Re-tailoring the bike as a touring model didn't help because the rotary's poor fuel mileage limited useful range. So after just two years in production, Suzuki pulled the plug on the RE5, making it among the
most rare of 1970s Japanese street bikes.

This 1977 model from the last year of sales is special in that has never been ridden, showing just 0.7-mile on the odometer – that from being moved round the garage. The seat still wears its protective plastic covering. A true time-capsule machine.

Estimate: $13,000 - 16,000

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Advertised by: Bonhams Motorcycle Auctions (click here to see full profile)
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Ad Details

Property is Sold
Garage Spaces (put 0 if this does not apply) 0.00
Type: Classic Vehicle / Collector Vehicle, Motorcycle
New or Used: New
Year: 1977
Model: RE=5 Rotary
Make: Suzuki
Price $13,000 USD
Price Info Did not sell. Sale Estimate of: $13,000 - 16,000
Exterior Color: Black


Type & Features: Classic and Collector Motorcycles, Cruiser

For Sale at Auction

Auction Sale? Yes
Type of Auction Phone Bidding, Internet Bidding, On-site Registration, Retail Auction Event
Auction Date 05/14/2011
Auction Time 2:00 PM PST
Location Quail Lodge, Carmel, California
Name of Auction Bonham's Collectors' Motorcycles and Related Memorabilia
Auction Website http://www.bonhams.com/usa/auction/19391/lot/135/#

Unique Sale Issues

Type of Sale Auction Company Sale


Website http://www.bonhams.com/usa/motorcycles/


Address 8205 Valley Greens Dr
City Carmel
State CA
Postal Code 93923
Country USA

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Phone +1 323 436 5470
Ad id: 17171603
Ad views:3935
Current rating Average score 9 after 2 votesAverage score 9 after 2 votesAverage score 9 after 2 votesAverage score 9 after 2 votesAverage score 9 after 2 votes Grade


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