Pope Francis autographed Harley-Davidson auctioned off for more than 240,000 euros
Last June, Pope Francis received at 1,585cc Harley-Davidson Dyna Super Glide and another motorcycle, from Mark-Hans Richer, Harley-Davidson's senior vice-president as part of the American manufacturer’s 110th anniversary.
Over 35,000 bikers from around the world gathered in the Italian capital, in one of the biggest-ever celebrations outside of the United States.
His Holiness also received one of Harley-Davidson's 110th anniversary black leather jacket.
The 2013 Dyna Super Glide - intended to be used for charity - and the jacket that were autographed by the Pontiff with his Italian name ‘Francesco’ went up for auction at as part of the Rétromobile Week and Bonhams Les Grandes Marques du Monde sale at the Grand Palais in Paris, France last Thursday.
The bike and jacket were placed on the auction block in order to raise money for the renovation of Don Luigi di Liegro’s hostel and soup kitchen based at Rome's Termini railway station, and run by Caritas Roma, a charity which works on behalf of the Roman Catholic church.
The Harley-Davidson motorbike ended up being auctioned for almost 20 times its estimated value - it had a pre-sale estimate of 12,000-15,000 euros.
The Dyna Super Glide was sold for an amazing 241,500 euros (£200,555,), while the Harley-Davidson leather jacket (size XL) sold for 57,500 euros (£47,751).
Both items went to anonymous buyers: one in Europe and the other was an "overseas buyer," reported Bonhams.
The bidding war for the two items lasted just six minutes.
"It has to be a world record for a post-vintage motorbike from the 21st century and certainly for a Harley-Davidson leather jacket," said Ben Walker, head of motorcycles at Bonhams.
"I am thrilled with the result achieved and am very pleased for the charity.”
Enrico Feroci, director of Caritas Roma, added: "We are delighted with the results of the sale, which far exceeded any of our expectations."
Obviously the 77-year-old Pope never rode the machine, because as Bonhams put it, he has a "preference for modest modes of transport".