Entertainment & Arts

Easy Rider motorcycle auctioned for $1.35m

Easy Rider bike beside a still of Peter Fonda from the film Image copyright AFP
Image caption Peter Fonda (left) played Wyatt, aka "Captain America", in the 1969 film

A customised motorcycle said to have "starred" in 1969 film Easy Rider has been auctioned for $1.35m (£838,821) despite claims it is not authentic.

California auction house Profiles in History said bidding had been fierce but did not name the buyer.

Reportedly used in the film's climactic crash scene, the Harley-Davidson was restored by actor Dan Haggerty.

Yet the bike's authenticity has been questioned by another collector who claims he owns the actual chopper used.

Gordon Granger of Texas also claims he has a certificate, signed by Grizzly Adams star Haggerty, proving his bike is the genuine article.

Haggerty, who had a small role in the counterculture classic, admitted to the Los Angeles Times he had authenticated and sold two "Captain America" bikes - the character played by Peter Fonda in the film.

Yet he insisted that only of them was genuine - the one belonging to California real estate agent Michael Eisenberg that was sold on Saturday.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption The bike was signed by Peter Fonda at Haggerty's request

Eisenberg bought the bike in 2014 from another man who had purchased it from Haggerty 12 years earlier.

The chopper bears the signature of Fonda on its teardrop-shaped gas tank, though he too has queried its veracity.

"There's a big rat stinking someplace in this," the 74-year-old actor is quoted as saying by the Los Angeles Times.

"I can't tell you which one is real, I know there are two bikes out there that are both authenticated by Haggerty. That's not right."

Decorated with the American flag, the bike sold on Saturday features a forward-angled front wheel and handlebars and fishtail exhaust pipes.

The chopper previously spent 12 years on display at the National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa, Iowa.

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