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Wolf of Wall Street: 1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf

Before we start and this gets out of hand, you *might* remember when you could buy one of these for $12. Or $1500. Or maybe even $10k. Those days are gone. The fact is this sub 10,000 mile RG500 Walter Wolf edition Gamma is on eBay for just a tad shy of $33,000. And while the market will vote with the wallet, it doesn’t really matter if this bike sells. You see, the market has already spoken in the form of the motorcycle auctions held in Las Vegas in late January. There, record prices were realized for all sorts of stuff that you might remember selling for a lot cheaper. The market is up, and the stuff we like to collect is rising on that tide. Thus, we are looking at a very expensive 1986 Gamma in rare clothing.

1986 Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf for sale on eBay

Beneath the purple, red and gold paint and beyond the white faced gauges, a Walter Wolf Gamma is really just a Gamma. That is to say, it is a marvelous twin-crank, square four two stroke that rips like it came straight off the racetrack. This was the unobtanium treat that US buyers were categorically denied. Enterprising enthusiasts soon learned to import the RG as a used bike – often from just over our northern border – and hooligan behavior ensued. Along with blue smoke and the sound that only a two stroke on the pipe can make.

From the seller:
Rare Suzuki RG500 Walter Wolf Limited Edition!

If not familiar with the Walter Wolf, the bikes were never sold in the US. Approximately 100 were sold in Canada. This example here was imported from Alberta BC. This bike sits in my collection and is in excellent condition, with only 15665 km (9734 miles). The bike is free of common stress cracks around the various panel mounting points. Tires have good tread although I would recommend replacing if plans are to ride the bike.

The instrument housing foam shows some deformation, however a new replacement will be included along with a service manual. This bike is an excellent clean example of a Walter Wolf to ride or put in a collection! If not familiar with the value of Walter Wolf’s, included in the pictures is a recent sale. This bike showed 33400km.

Walter Wolf was a Canadian business man and something of a motor sport legend. Originally from Austria but self made in Canada as an oil man, Wolf poured his money into racing – investing in Frank William’s Formula 1 team and running his own Wolf Racing F1 operation. He had the money and the drive, and sponsored both automobile as well as motorcycle racing. Today, the Wolf brand is celebrated by a couple of different branded products – such as this wonderful Walter Wolf RG500, a tribute of Wolf colors and logos. The Walter Wolf Edition RG500 (there was also a 400 and 250 model) was released to the home market (in power restricted format) as well as Canada (estimated 100 units) and Western Europe. There are slight differences between each of the market-specific models largely due to local regulations (i.e. headlights, turn signals, etc). Japanese market bikes utilize a specific WW gauge package, while Canadian bikes make due with stock RG units. Logo placement is also slightly different between the markets.

Real and authentic WW models are few and far between. We have seen WW replicas on these pages before, so buyers do your homework, research and analysis up front. With only a graphics package separating a rare Wolf from a regular RG, it is not that difficult to build a replica. Today’s WW RG500 looks pretty clean, has enough miles to be a rider without so many as to be clapped out. Check it out here, although the pictures are (unfortunately) low res. I’m sure there will be many comments about how absurd the price is, but the seller counters with a photo directly from the Mecum auctions. Haters will hate, but the Las Vegas auction is the bellwether for collector pricing – and as of today, prices are running high. Hard to tell if there is enough here to ignite the kind of bidding war that drive top auction prices, but for now there is a very rare and cool Walter Wolf edition RG500 Gamma waiting for you on eBay. And you didn’t even have to go to Vegas. Good Luck!!

MI

9 Comments

  • Hey I bought one of these for $5k just a few years ago… 🙂 OK maybe not but I do have a zero-mile-still-in-the-‘crate’ Tamiya model of one!

    Seriously though, I wonder how well the Vegas auction prices will translate to private sales. The big auctions have a few advantages:
    – bikes and buyers are already there, so shipping is easier for buyers buying more than 1 bike
    – bikes and buyers are already there, so in-person inspection is easy
    – bikes and buyers are already there, so impulse buying is in full effect
    – live in-person auction gets more of the “she won’t outbid ME!!!” mentality in play
    – crazy-high $$$ bikes (Crocker, Vincent, green frame Ducs, SuperMono…) make a “mere” $30k rare/cool bike like this WW Gamma seem relatively cheap

    More power to the seller if he gets an offer in line with the expectation set by Vegas, but it won’t surprise me if it takes a while.

  • The price is only absurd if you can’t afford it. It’s worth whatever someone will pay.

    What is the perceived premium for being a Canadian WW? It’s only paint and decals. Nothing else. How much more is it worth just because the VIN is between 0G2100883 and 2G2100982, when all that VIN gets you is paint and stickers?

    I have a Canadian RG500 in my collection. If I was going to spend $33K for something now I’d be looking for a VDue.

  • Non standard pipes and the addition of a steering damper not mentioned in the listing…
    Plus the pictures are not up to a $30k+ listing.

  • I see “collector quality” is the new “museum quality” That price is insane. For a rare bike these Walter Wolf sure pop up a lot. perhaps it’s the same bike being flipped? We are well and truly in bubble Territory. Anyone looking to buy would do well to wait about 5 or 6 years when this market will implode………..

  • Mecum auction just showed prices are not quality or historic value driven, but purely driven by emotion and current wallet thickness.

    We saw an NS400 sell for $30K and a little while later an RG500 WW sell for mid 20’s and then an RD500 sell for $16k and poof an RD500 sell for $30k and then an NS400 sell for $20k and an RC30 sell for $80k and then a few hours later a VFR400R sell for $24k and then an RC30 sell for $17k and then an RC45 and RC30 not sell.

    Timing is everything.

    For the patient buyers out there you can still buy a bike at a decent price.

    Think about it, if you buy an NS400 at auction for $34,000 yo uwill be waiting a loooooooooooooooooong time to make your money back.

    God luck to seller and buyer spend wisely.

  • Going price for a nice wild RG500 is 35k.

  • Collectors are not desperate sellers which reflects the price. Probably one of many bikes stored in the heated facility just sitting there waiting for the right person to love it more than him. The problem with older bikes is parts and maintenance if your bike runs that’s part of the problem of selling an older bike. It’s the cost of Maintenance that drives the price is up

  • Except Mecum sales say different. $24k tops.

    So again, prices reflect emotion and thickness of wallet on the day.

  • Mecum this year was and has been for the last couple of years a great place to launder money.

    Motorcycles were selling for prices that were not indicative of relative pricing and 4 buyers chinese bought most of the bikes there. Motorcycles from previous years (purchased by chinese buyers) returned to the block with dust from the warehouse they had just been left in.

    There were thousands of complaints against the auction.

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