This is the 1949 Fonz Triumph Trophy 500, and you can buy it
In the history of pop culture, certain vehicles have a life of their own. Even if you are not interested in cars, bikes or light cargo Corellian Engineering Corp. YT-1300, these are the types of vehicles that become inextricably linked with beloved visual entertainment in your mind. Think of the wide range of Batmobiles over the years, or the Ecto-1 from Ghostbusters or Steve McQueen’s Triumph TR6 from the great Escape.
Now another hugely famous Triumph is set to cross the auction block in December 2021. Like many production used vehicles, the crew of the Happy Days TV series had more than one Triumph so Arthur “Fonzie” Fonzarelli could ride as needed. One was a 1952 Triumph TR5 he was Fonz’s main rider on the show, and still had the bumps to prove it from 2020. (According to the show’s lore, actor Henry Winkler was not a particularly skilled rider and therefore crashed more than once while filming scenes.)
It is known that a total of three Triumphs were used to shoot the Happy Days series, and it is the Triumph Trophy 500 Custom from 1949 which is included in a Bonhams auction on December 8, 2021. TCM presents… Hollywood Cool, unfortunately, does not yet have a full auction catalog available. At the moment, this Fonzie Triumph is the only bike listed, with most items being other assorted pieces of Hollywood memorabilia. If you are a huge Happy Days fan, however, it’s probably worth noting that a full Fonzie outfit from the series, as worn by Henry Winkler, is offered in a separate auction lot.
This particular bike was first auctioned via Bonhams in 2011, after being rediscovered after missing for some time after the TV show ended in 1984. Legendary Hollywood stuntman Bud Ekins personalized it, and this is yet another similarity between this Triumph and that of McQueen. Great escape bicycle. At the time, Ekins was The guy to which Hollywood productions have turned for all their motorcycle needs.
Anyway, this bike later sold for an incredible $ 179,200 at Julien’s Auctions Hollywood Legends event in Las Vegas in 2018, and it’s now back on the market in 2021. Currently, Bonhams estimates it will sell for between € 69,000 and € 100,000 (around £ 59,000 and £ 85,500), but time will tell how this particular sale goes.