Thursday, November 27, 2008


Bonhams has sold one of the most iconic scooters of all time - 'Jimmy's Lambretta', used in the film 'Quadrophenia', for the lordly sum of £36,000.
KRU 251F is a '67 Lambretta Li 150 series 3, heavily accessorized as per Mod style for the 1979 film, based on the Who's rock opera, and was used by the character James 'Jimmy' Cooper (as per the song Doctor Jimmy and Mr. Jim). Actor Phil Daniels played Jimmy (see pic below), and after filming, the prop was sold to Portsmouth dealer Rafferty Newman (as a window display), then passed through several hands over the years in the area, eventually being spotted by the current owner, where it was lying in a front garden in Southsea.

He recognized the registration (although in the film, the 'F' suffix, denoting '67 registration, was blacked out, as the period setting was earlier in the 60's), and negotiated a sale, which included all the accessories, which had been removed for safekeeping by the owner. After total restoration, the bike has since gone on tour, winning concours, appearing at the re-release of Quadrophenia in '97 with the film cast, and was featured on a Scootering International magazine cover, before a recent spate of erratic behavior and an arrest for drugs use (just kidding).

As an aside, a few years ago a smart fellow claimed the name rights to 'Lambretta', and began what has become a £4m/year business selling logo t-shirts and other swag. The trademark had been allowed to lapse by Innocenti (the parent company), so the name was free for the taking!

Below is a youtube video which shows 'Jimmy's Bike'..


Anonymous said...

Hi Paul
It was stange to read that last article of yours on Raffery Newman's Lambretta as I used to go to Art college in Portsmouth and I spent many a lunchtime in there dribbling, as it was only a 10 minute walk down the road. I also have a couple of scooters, lambretta li 4, quite rare, factory tunned and a 1960 Vespa N, both are for sale...
best regards, Nik

Anonymous said...

Made me laugh to see jimmy change gear he stays in first going to fast for first lol