24th Apr, 2024 13:00

Pavilion Gardens | Buxton, Derbyshire

  Lot 37

1930 Rolls-Royce 20/25 Three Position Drophead Coupe
Former 'Best in Show' Winner

Estimated at £50,000 - £60,000

Lot details

Registration No: HX 795
Chassis No: GLR68
MOT: Exempt

  • Rebodied by Charlton of Evesham as part of a professional, 'chassis up' restoration
  • A subsequent award winner at various Rolls-Royce gatherings
  • Exquisitely detailed throughout with art deco door furniture and bespoke door cappings (fashioned from a single timber) etc
  • Entered from a private collection and still running on an Autovac
  • Finished in Midnight Blue with Cream leather upholstery and a Navy Blue hood

A logical progression from Rolls-Royce's first `owner driver' model the 20hp, the 20/25hp was introduced in 1929. Near identical to its forebear, at least to begin with, the newcomer enjoyed a greater turn of speed thanks to an enlarged 3669cc OHV straight-six engine. Fed by a single Rolls-Royce carburettor and carrying both magneto and coil ignition, the super-smooth powerplant was mounted in unit with a four-speed manual gearbox (the latter operated via a traditional right-hand change). Capable of supporting a wide variety of coachwork, the 20/25hp's substantial ladder frame chassis was equipped with all-round semi-elliptic leaf-sprung suspension, four-wheel drum brakes and a mechanical servo. Progressively developed, the Rolls-Royce 20/25hp remained in production until 1936 by which time some 3,827 are thought to have been sold.

Initially clothed by Park Ward as a four-door, four-light Saloon complete with sunshine roof, chassis GLR68 had its factory guarantee issued during July 1930. Having served the London coachbuilder as a demonstrator, the Rolls-Royce was sold some seven months later to Dr Douglas C. Beaumont of 6 Lower Berkeley Street, Portman Square, W1. Subsequently falling into disrepair, the 20/25 was little more than a rolling chassis when acquired by its previous keeper, Roger Charlton Esq. A man of considerable talents, photographs on file show that he used chassis GLR68 as a ‘blank canvas’ upon which to create a truly exquisite three-position Drophead Coupe. Bodied to his own design but with echoes of the Fiacre-style coachwork found aboard Vintage Bugattis, the result is a singularly handsome car that was awarded ‘Best in Show’ at a past Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts’ Club Rally. Even hidden elements such as the boot stay are neatly executed, while the wonderfully intricate door cappings were apparently crafted from a single piece of timber. Supported by triple hinges, the doors open and close with ease giving access to the fully-lined hood, well-stocked dashboard and Cream leather upholstery of the interior. The Lucas headlights and ‘Owl’s Eyes’ taillights contrast nicely with the Midnight Blue paintwork as do the raised elements of the Ace wheel discs. Befriending Mr Charlton through their mutual membership of the Bristol Owners’ Club, the vendor was only too happy to welcome ‘HX 795’ into his own collection and has many fond memories of five-up journeys around East Anglia. Starting readily and running well upon inspection, the 20/25 is still fuelled via an Autovac. Highly presentable, it would not seemingly take much to return the Rolls-Royce to concours standards. Splitting his time between various homes and countries, the seller has decided to give someone else the chance to own chassis GLR68. Worthy of close inspection, this delightful Three-Position Drophead Coupe is offered for sale with V5C Registration Document, copy chassis cards and sundry restoration photos.

For more information, please contact:
Damian Jones
07855 493737


Auction: Pavilion Gardens | Buxton, Derbyshire, 24th Apr, 2024

An auction of classic, collector and performance motorcars to be held in the beautiful surrounds of the Pavilion Gardens, Buxton, Derbyshire.Venue Details

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