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Lot 248: 1953 Bentley R-Type Drophead Coupe

Spirit of Motoring, Coys (29 September 2005)

The launch of the Bentley Mk VI in 1946 marked a significant change in policy for Rolls-Royce by being the company's first wholly produced car; previously both Rolls-Royce and Bentley motor cars had been manufactured in chassis form only before being bodied by independent bespoke coachbuilders. This change came about as the result of a rationalisation programme instigated before World War Two, it being realised that if Rolls-Royce Motors was to survive in the post-war years a substantial increase in manufacturing output would be necessary.Initially, however, only the new Bentley, the Mark VI, would carry "in-house" Standard Steel COA, its Rolls-Royce equivalent, the Silver Wraith, retaining outside COA. Announced in May 1946, the Mark VI featured a strong channel section chassis with independent wishbone/coil spring front suspension allied to a live, leaf-sprung rear axle. Power was provided by the pre-war B60 4,257cc six cylinder engine - with overhead inlet and side exhaust valves and belt rather than gear-driven dynamo and water pump, both major changes from previous Rolls-Royce practice - sufficient to propel the Bentley, via twin SU carburettors, to 90mph.The only major mechanical change came in May 1951 when engine capacity was increased to 4,566cc together with a change from a by-pass oil filter system to one using a full-flow layout. The same year the Mark VI was joined by the R Type, a sporting yet very refined owner-driver model, which could cover long distances in great comfort. In total, 2,320 R-Types were produced and 2,320 R-Types with production ceasing in 1955.This car is the beautiful and desirable R-Type drophead coupe finished in shell blue over midnight blue with bodywork handcrafted by Park Ward in 1953. Previously owned by newspaperman Woodrow Wyatt and formerly registered 1 BNG, chassis number B3 TO was only re-registered with the current WSJ 713 plate in March of this year. The current owner, who has had the car for 20 years, reports that it is in good condition, with the blue leather interior having recently been reupholstered. The engine was rebuilt in 1995 with the gearbox being the desirable original four-speed manual 'box. The car comes complete with a V5, a copy of the original invoice, 13 old MoT certificates, and is currently having its MoT renewed. A striking and superb open four seater touring Bentley suitable for all occasions.

Lot Details
Auction Spirit of Motoring
Coys, Westminster, London SW1
Lot Number248
Outcome NOT SOLD
Hammer Price-
Hammer Price (inc premium)-
Condition rating
Registration numberWSJ 713
Chassis numberB3TO
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors