The Bike of Legend- Vincent Black Prince

I grew up in a town where the love of motorbikes were huge. My mother didn’t love them- she is a theatre sister, and saw a lot of my friends in theatre after a crash. To this day she HATES my bikes… But it is good for her prayer life…

Anyhoo… when I was still in the primary school, the boys already spoke a lot about Bikes on the playground.  There were some who had encyclopedic knowledge on the different Japanese 50cc bikes in town. We were huge Honda fans, the going model then was the MB 5. But it was seriously compared with the Kawasaki RD, and the Yamaha and Suzuki models of the day, for one day in the future- we would also be Bikers…  The one bike of those days which got a lot of respect, was the Suzuki Katana.  But as Honda Fans we would immediately also name the CB 750/900 F as also very good…

But then, someone would name THE NAME, nearly with as much dread and respect as Harry Potter’s Voldemort. THE bike of all times. The stuff of legend.  The going story in our town was: This bike is so powerful- nobody can ride it and live. You break your neck on the pullaway. And we all believed this to be the gospel truth… Not one of us have ever seen one, but we believed: The best bike ever…

And here it is- the Vincent Black Prince…


The story of these bikes begin in 1924, with the HRD Motorcycle Company. A Pilot of WW1 started it, named Howard Raymond Davies (1895—1973). He was joined by Philip Conrad Vincent (1908—1979) where the Vincent name originated for certain models.

Vincent Black Prince (1955)
Years in production: 1954-55

Engine type: 50 degree V-twin ohv

four-stroke Bore and stroke: 84 x 90mm Capacity: 998cc Compression ratio: 7.3:1 Power: 55bhp @ 5700rpm Carburettors: I Viiin Amals Tyres (front/rear): 3’hx I9in/
4x I8in Weight 4601b Top speed: 120mph

The Internet is such a wonderful tool. Today was the first day ever that I thought on these bikes again, and started to wonder what they were all about. They were considered to be ugly those days, but are highly sought after today. A Black Prince and Black Shadow sold at auction for $122 500 each in Las Vegas in 2012- look at this blog…

Breakneck power? No. It has more or less the same power as my BMW R850R- quite manageable!

But then- schoolboys need to have their legends and their dreams… ImageImage

17 thoughts on “The Bike of Legend- Vincent Black Prince

  1. I must be a weird mother – I bought my son his first bike! Now he has a Triumph Trident plus a classic BSA with sidecar. He likes the old bikes because he does all the repairs himself.

  2. Ek verstaan daai aanmekaar bid van jou ma. Ek het groot geword in ‘n huis met bikes. My pa en my broers en my man en nou……my seun. En nou verstaan ek eers daai aanmekaar bid van ‘n ma!!!
    My pa se eerste motorfiets was ‘n James met ‘n De Villiers engin. En ek is op soek na ‘n foto van so ‘n motorfiets.
    Enige hulp van jou kant af?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s