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Postwar production of BMW’s popular small-displacement single commenced in 1948 with the R24. By 1951 engine capacity had been increased to roughly 250 cc, garnering designation as the R25. By 1953 the model had evolved and, with the final moniker of “R25/3,” BMW was furnishing the public with their most popular single yet.
The new model boasted higher compression and a horsepower increase to 13 bhp. The motorcycle featured new front and rear suspension to improve ride in addition to new hubs front and rear. Over the three-year model run, BMW offered the R25/3 with the “BMW Sidecar Standard” Steib LS 200.
As the leading German manufacturer of sidecars, the combination of Steib products with BMW motorcycles was a popular and successful pairing. In the early 1950s, the growing market for small-displacement motorcycles meant similar success in sidecar sales. For this, Steib introduced the LS 200 for motorcycles up to 350 cc. Designed first and foremost to be light, the LS 200 retained many of the creature comforts afforded by the full Steib model line, including a trunk, padded interior with armrests, and a removable screen and tonneau.
A quintessential example of the BMW and Steib combination, this particular pair proves to be accurately presented. Believed to have been restored roughly 15 years ago, the combination was purchased in 2002 by Northwest collector Stephen Ready. Since the freshly restored motorcycle was in need of some minor teething, Ready entrusted the pair to Kevin Brooks of Brooks Motor Works in Lacey, Washington. Brooks’ reputation for quality work on BMW motorcycles is well known, and he subsequently performed roughly $1,500 worth of servicing.
As a collection piece and occasional ride, the R25/3 and LS 200 pair was eventually sold in 2011 to yet another Northwest collector of BMW motorcycles amongst other motor vehicles. More recently, a Seattle-area collector acquired the combination and it was praised for the quality and presentation of the restoration, in addition to its uniqueness. The BMW was stabled with the collection, which includes a Manx Norton, a 1974 Ducati 750 SS, and numerous other significant motorcycles, until presenting itself for public sale today. For the collector in search of exceptional, and usable, garage art, this R25/3 and LS 200 combination is worth consideration.