7th Dec, 2022 12:30

National Motorcycle Museum

  Lot 361

c.1969-1970 Kawasaki HR1A
1 of c.42 H1RAs produced

Estimated at £35,000 - £40,000

Lot details

Registration No: N/A
Frame No: KAE90072
Engine No: KAE90084
CC: 500
MOT: Exempt

  • Believed imported from the USA
  • Possibly an original Team Hansen tank
  • Previously subjected to mechanical overhauling

This H1R was first sold new in 1971 with the current vendor purchasing the bike from a Mr N.J Crocker in March 2017. Mr Crocker, an avid motorcycle collector, had owned this bike for 17 years; it was partially restored but a non-runner. It was reported to be imported from the USA by BB Brothers and then swapped for a Manx Norton over 30 years ago; this was a factory-backed bike run by Wes Cooley senior for Mike Lane.

Not proven, however, looking at the petrol tank it appears to be an original Team Hansen tank with just a quick filler inlet and the frame design is a late ’71/72 model. The factory used the late ’71 H1RAS for development of the new H2R, released the following year. The engine internals are H1RAS factory specification, with a close ratio gearbox, a roller bearing crank, highly ported barrels with bridged inlet and exhaust ports.

The machine has been the subject of an overhaul of the forks, brakes and engine. The engine was stripped and washed, with the crank having been taken to Kawasaki crank specialist, Mr Gary Clark, who overhauled it utliising genuine rods, mains, and seals. The barrels were rebored with and the engine was rebuilt with new pistons and rings correctly installed; the gearbox was inspected and new bearings and seals were installed.

Timeline of the H1 machines:

1968 - Kawasaki announced the launch of an all-new H1 500cc road bike. This was to be a two-stroke triple endowed with 60bhp and a 3 second 0 - 60 time, figures which instantly attracted the attention of the tuning and racing fraternity, who soon produced a modified bike for racing.

1969 – The early modified H1’s were successfully campaigned in racing series throughout the world and Kawasaki started to develop the first factory-produced race bike with a dry clutch and larger ports and carbs.

1970 - Kawasaki quickly recognised the demand for a factory racer and in 1970 developed the H1R which was available worldwide as a limited production racer, it is reported that Kawasaki sold 40 machines to race teams and privateers. The H1R 500cc triple two-stroke engine claimed 80 hp @ 9,500 rpm. During the 1970 Daytona 200 road race, an H1R piloted by Ginger Molloy was clocked on the banking at an unheard-of 159.83mph.

1971- Developed the H1RA H1R-mounted Dave Simmonds gave Kawasaki its debut classic victory at the Spanish Grand Prix. 1971 also brought Kawasaki and a rider forever associated with marque - Yvon Duhamel. A French Canadian, Duhamel was signed by Kawasaki in 1971. Kawasaki trusted him by rewarding the Japanese manufacturer with its first AMA National win, at that year’s Talladega 200.

1972 - H1RAS Late in 1971 Kawasaki was developing the H2R and made several modifications to the frame and engine as pre cursor to the H2R, lowboy frames, and bridged inlet and exhaust ports.

1973 –1974 – H1RW air-cooled development machines, identical to the H2R with 35mm frames instead of the 37mm of the H2R and the front caliper mountings were forged into the fork legs and the factory bike ran a 6 speed gearbox.

1975 – H1RW - Liquid cooled ridden by Mick Grant, at the end of 1995 Kawasaki stopped racing 500s to concentrate on their 750’s.

For more information, please contact:
Mike Davis
07718 584217


Auction: National Motorcycle Museum, 7th Dec, 2022

An auction of classic motorcycles & vintage scooters


Wednesday 7th December 2022, from 9am

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