Lot 329 - 1951 Bentley Mk. VI Saloon by HJ Mulliner
|Odometer reading||88,870 miles|
|Estimate||£19,000 - £24,000|
The Bentley Mk. VI was the first post-war luxury car from Bentley produced from 1946 to 1952; it was also the first car from Rolls-Royce with factory coachwork but chassis were still also supplied to independent coachbuilders. The chassis and engine went on to be used as the basis of the Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith of 1946 and Silver Dawn of 1949. The factory bodies were made by Pressed Steel Ltd of Coventry and sent to the Bentley works at Crewe for painting and fitting out with traditional wood and leather. They featured rear hinged 'suicide' doors at the front and a sliding sunroof. Those buyers with a more discerning palette and deeper pockets also had the option of using one of the many coachbuilders available at the time such as HJ Mulliner & Co, a British coach building company started in 1900 in Brook Street, London. The company prospered, being closely linked from the outset with the leading makers of chassis and practically with Rolls-Royce. Coachbuilding continued after the Second World War but on a reduced scale and, in 1959, an approach was made to Rolls-Royce which resulted in the company being taken over by them and eventually merging with their other coachbuilding company in 1961 to make H.J. Mulliner, Park Ward.
This original example of Bentley's popular Mk. VI saloon was indeed designed and constructed by H J Mulliner and supplied new through Car Mart Ltd, London, to Office Cleaning Services. 262LJ is no 28 of 36 aluminium bodied sports saloons built by Mulliners in 1951 to design 7122 described by Martyn Nutland in his book 'Bentley Mark VI' as the best looking coach built saloon created by Mulliner. It was purchased in the early 1970's by the Bentley Drivers Club, South East Region Treasurer, Mr. Geoffrey Maund, who kept the car for nearly thirty years before being bought by the vendor at the end of 2011. Upon purchase, he had the car taken to specialists who carried out a major service on the car and at the same time removed the engine sump and cleaned out the oil ways in the cylinder block and crank shaft. The distributor and carburettors were also completely rebuilt. This very original Bentley Mk. VI drives extremely well, the engine runs very smoothly and the gear changes easily. Finished in black with grey leather interior, the car is supplied with a V5C registration document, a new MoT test certificate and old MoT test certificates. This well proportioned coachbuilt Bentley is regarded as one of the best balanced bodies of the time giving excellent visibility through the large glass area and the whole car presents a light and pleasing appearance.
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.