Lot 281 - 1966 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupé by Mulliner Park Ward
|Odometer reading||90,871 miles|
|Estimate||£300,000 - £360,000|
Launched in 1962, the Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III and its Bentley S3 equivalent employed the 6.2-litre, V8 engine introduced on the Cloud II/S2 but with larger carburettors, revised distributor, increased compression ratio and a four-speed, GM-derived automatic transmission as standard equipment. Most obvious among many changes from the preceding models was the adoption of four-headlamp lighting, the absence of sidelights from the wing tops and a slightly lower radiator shell. Inside there was improved accommodation with separate front seats and increased room for rear passengers. Notable as the last mainstream Rolls-Royce to employ a separate chassis, the Silver Cloud III proved immensely successful both at home and abroad, remaining in production until the Autumn of 1965. As well as the factory-bodied cars, bespoke creations from James Young and the recently merged firm of H. J. Mulliner, Park Ward Ltd (by this time Rolls-Royce-owned) continued to be available on the Silver Cloud III chassis for those discerning enthusiasts wealthy enough to afford them. Indeed, as the factory did not offer a convertible or drophead coupé, a coachbuilt car was the only option if one's preference was Rolls-Royce-style, fresh air motoring. First introduced in 1958, H. J. Mulliner's was the most successful of its type, lasting into 1963; more modern 'straight-through wing' designs became the preferred style thereafter. This design by Norwegian Vilhelm Koren, with its influential continuous front-to-rear wing line, first appeared on the Bentley S2 Continental in 1959 but did not become available on non-Continental models (both Bentley and Rolls-Royce) until after the arrival of the Silver Cloud III and S3 in 1962. These 'Chinese Eye' models constituted the majority of coachbuilt variants completed between 1962 and 1966.
This is the penultimate Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupé commissioned and the last one ever registered, hence it is a very important part of Rolls-Royce's history. Originally supplied to the Malaysian royal family, chassis number CSC 81C was delivered in June 1966 and was repatriated to the UK around ten years ago by the Managing Director of the Bentley dealer in Exeter. The car was restored by their skilled craftsman and added to his own private collection of classic cars. Since restoration, the car has covered minimal mileage, although this incredibly handsome Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupé did appear in the film 'London Boulevard' and was driven by the Hollywood star Colin Farrell. Finished in midnight blue with grey leather interior, this Rolls-Royce epitomises the first-class quality of such a prestigious marque and iconic vehicle. The comfort of the sumptuous armchair style seats and the dark rich walnut dash combine to make this coachbuilt Rolls-Royce a delightful car to look and an even better one to drive. Supplied with a history file, V5 registration document and an MoT test certificate valid until 17th August 2016, this Mulliner Park Ward Drophead Coupé is one of only 100 manufactured of which 51 were righthand drive examples such as this.
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.