27th Jul, 2022 13:00

Pavilion Gardens, Buxton

 
Lot 111
 

1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III Fixed Head Coupe
No Reserve

Sold for £30,375

(including buyers premium)


Lot details

Registration No: 993 UXJ
Chassis No: 3-CP-64
MOT: Exempt

  • Supplied new to F.C. Burgess Esq. of Clifton Down, Bristol and owned post-WW2 by Frank Bowden Esq. of Cadogan Square, London SW1
  • Reputedly rebodied as a Fixed Head Coupe by Vert of Gerona, Spain during the 1960s before relocating to America
  • Current family ownership since 1991 when it was purchased from Barrett-Jackson's Arizona sale for $45,000

Although unveiled to the public at the October 1935 Olympia Motor Show, the Phantom III did not enter series production until May 1936. A fabulous design that reasserted Rolls-Royce's right to be considered as the world's pre-eminent car manufacturer, its cruciform-braced chassis featured independent coil-sprung front suspension, a fully-floating 'live' rear axle, hydraulic shock absorbers and gearbox driven servo-assisted four-wheel drum brakes. Drawing on decades of aero-engine experience, it was powered by a 7340cc ohv V12. Fabricated largely from aluminium alloy, this technically advanced unit boasted a seven-bearing crankshaft, eight-bearing camshaft, hydraulic tappets and dual downdraught Stromberg carburettors. Effortlessly potent and eerily smooth, it required a level of care and maintenance not dissimilar to that of its Schneider Trophy winning siblings. Allied to a four-speed manual gearbox (complete with synchromesh on second, third and fourth gears), it gave most variants a 100mph top speed. Only built for three short seasons, just 727 Phantom IIIs are thought to have been despatched worldwide.

Initially bodied as an Enclosed Limousine by Park Ward, chassis 3-CP-64 was supplied new to F.C. Burgess Esq of Llanfoist House, Clifton Down, Bristol. Accompanying copy chassis cards reveal that the Rolls-Royce was maintained with factory parts - many ‘fitted by our man’ - up until WW2. Sold to Frank Bowden Esq. of Pont St, Cadogan Square, London SW1 in February 1946, the Phantom III is understood to have been clothed with its current and very extravagant two-door Fixed Head Coupe body by Josep Vert of Gerona, Spain during the 1960s. Carroceria Vert are thought to have rebodied twenty-two Rolls-Royces in total with most being open cars. Their design for chassis 3-CP-64, however, saw its seating capacity reduced from seven / eight to two! A real eyeful with a profligate tail, it is perhaps little wonder that the Phantom III migrated to America. Taken into stock by John Verba’s New England Classic Autos, the Fixed Head Coupe was said to be in very good mechanical condition with its V12 engine benefiting from a carburettor overhaul and retrofitted lifters before being consigned to Barrett-Jackson’s Arizona auction in January 1991. Further boasting a refurbished interior using a West of England cloth headlining, Connolly hides, Wilton carpets and English Yew and Carpathian Burled Elm wood veneers, it was bought by the vendors’ late father for $45,000. Showing an indicated 95,854 miles to its odometer at the time, the same instrument now displays 95,887 miles. Re-registered with the DVLA as ‘993 UXJ’ during March 2005, this believed unique Rolls-Royce has spent much of the intervening seventeen years in dry storage. Thought to be substantially complete but now in need of recommissioning / restoration, this believed unique Rolls-Royce makes a refreshing change from all the more conventionally bodied Phantom IIIs out there. Offered for sale with V5C Registration Document, copy RREC chassis records, 1991 contract of sale and sundry paperwork.

 

Auction: Pavilion Gardens, Buxton, 27th Jul, 2022

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Tuesday 26th July 2022 from 12pm to 6pm
Wednesday 27th July 2022 from 9am

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