Lot 248 - 1955 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith Lightweight Touring Limousine by H J Mulliner
|Odometer reading||59,000 miles|
|Estimate||£36,000 - £42,000|
In April 1946 the first post-war model from Rolls-Royce was revealed to the public: the Silver Wraith. Following their pre-war tradition of manufacturing a rolling-chassis only, Rolls-Royce delivered these cars to be bodied by independent coachbuilders. Enjoying a seven-inch longer wheelbase than its Bentley Mk. VI sibling, the newcomer was based around a massive, box-section chassis equipped with independent front suspension, hydraulic shock absorbers (adjustable to the rear) and four-wheel drum brakes. Powered by a smooth 4257cc six-cylinder engine allied to four-speed manual transmission, the model appealed to both owner-drivers and passengers alike. The Silver Wraith outlived the Mk. VI and in fact survived until 1959 having been modernised step by step with vital improvements like automatic gearbox becoming an option in 1952 and power assisted steering in 1956. An engine bored out to 4,566cc had been phased in 1951 and in 1954 capacity was increased to 4,887cc. The Silver Wraith was the last Rolls-Royce model to show a vast variety of coachwork styles.
DLW 145 is one of just 20 lightweight touring limousines built along similar lines to the Bentley R-Type Lightweight Saloon. The traditional ash frame was replaced by a tubular and cast-alloy subframe for lightness and strength and although not a lightweight in racing terms, the extra performance released made a quantifiable difference on the road. Originally ordered by H E Hill, chairman of Birfield Industries of Portman Square, London, it is fitted with many bespoke features including an electric division, a speaker cabinet flanked by twin picnic tables, special large reading light, flower vase to 'b' pillar behind the driver's seat and an extra large rear seat to accommodate Mr Hill's 6' 4"" frame. In the late 1990's this car had a complete engine overhaul, followed by a full brake and servo rebuild, front suspension and chassis lubrication overhaul. A repaint in Shell Grey over midnight Blue together with new Rolls- Royce headlights completed the work. The car is in very good order throughout, with particularly good woodwork to the interior. This car is supplied with a V5C registration document, an MoT test certificate, copies of the chassis cards and some bills of the work carried out. This is one of the very few Silver Wraiths built whose style makes it as much as an 'owner driver' car as it is a Limousine.
Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Buyers are advised to inspect the car in person or use a professional to carry out this service.