1. 1966 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupe

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  52. 1966 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupe

Lot Number
63
Coachwork by Mulliner Park Ward
1966 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupe
Scottsdale Auction

ESTIMATE: $200,000 - $250,000
CHASSIS NO: LCSC39C
• One of just 52 left-hand drive examples produced
• Exceedingly rare H.J. Mulliner, Park Ward Drophead Coupe coachwork
• Offered from 25 years of single RROC Member ownership
• Outstanding, highly original example with documented provenance
• Accompanied by copy of the original Rolls-Royce chassis card

6,230 cc V-8 engine, twin SU carburetors, 216 HP, four-speed automatic gearbox, independent front suspension with upper and lower A-arms, coil springs, and hydraulic shock absorbers, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs and hydraulic shock absorbers, servo-assisted hydraulic front/mechanical rear drum brakes; wheelbase: 123"


Launched at the 1963 Earls Court (London) Motor Show, the Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupe (DHC) immediately took pride of place on the Rolls-Royce stand as the ultimate expression of the Silver Cloud series with its avant-garde styling and top-of-the-line stature. Bodies were crafted by Rolls-Royce coachbuilding subsidiary H.J. Mulliner, Park Ward Limited, retaining much of the design language set forth by Vilhelm Koren for the prior Silver Cloud II and Bentley S2 lines. Equally at home in Beverly Hills or cruising along the French Riviera, the Silver Cloud III DHC made a bold statement with its new canted four-headlamp frontal arrangement harmonizing nicely with the signature Rolls-Royce Greek Temple-inspired radiator shell, “straight-through” fender lines, and taillamps stacked vertically within dramatically raked upright housings. Now, as when new, the Silver Cloud III epitomizes style, luxury, and quality, marking the end of an era as the last “body-on-frame” Rolls-Royce produced with the sole exception of the Phantom VI limousine.

Numbered LCSC39C, this rare and highly collectible US-specification 1966 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupe is one of just 52 left-hand drive examples produced in all, according to the definitive book, “Every Cloud Has a Silver Lining,” by Davide Bassoli. A late-production, “Series C” car, it benefits from all the running updates applied to the Silver Cloud III chassis during its relatively brief production run. Additionally, the original details for LCSC39C are listed by Lawrence Dalton in “Rolls-Royce: The Classic Elegance,” as well as copies of the original Rolls-Royce chassis card provided by the Rolls-Royce Foundation.

While the Silver Cloud III DHC was often the automotive choice of elite Rolls-Royce clients and high-profile celebrities including acting legend Peter Sellers, the model was also favored by the quietly wealthy, including this exceptionally original example. An original U.S. model, Chassis LCSC39C was delivered to H.J. Mulliner Park Ward to receive its Style 2045 coachwork (Body No. Z.91) on October 11, 1965. On November 24, 1965, it was tested by Rolls-Royce and assigned UK Registration Number JGF 34D. Following completion, it was shipped to the United States via Rolls-Royce Inc. in New York and then delivered via Ascot Imported Cars on April 4, 1966 to Mrs. Marion Howe King of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Factory-installed features and options included Dunlop whitewall tires, a power top with storage bag and boot cover, a Radiomobile electric radio antenna, a hazard-warning flasher, electric side windows, a hand window-winder for emergency use, ‘Sundym’ brand glass for the windscreen and windows, and a set of luggage straps. A ‘FrigiKing’ air-conditioning system ensures all-weather comfort.

Mrs. King retained the car for some years, with the Silver Cloud III registered in her name and that of her personal attorney, Robert H. Peters, as recorded on a 1972-dated Pennsylvania registration stub. Interestingly, the Owner’s Handbook for the car also contains a handwritten note by Mrs. King reading “11-12-76 Installed all new muffler system 17,800 miles.” The next owner was Caroline Steele, who acquired the vehicle on March 25, 1991 at 37,870 recorded miles, according to a North Carolina state vehicle inspection document issued on that date. The consignor, a longstanding Rolls-Royce Owners Club member and marque collector, acquired LCSC39C in June 1993.

As offered, this Rolls-Royce remains exceptionally original, visually striking, and clearly benefits from the proper care, maintenance, and storage provided by its three caretakers from new. It retains most of the factory-original Valentines Smoke Green paint finish with selective touch-ups as required, while the luxurious Stone Connolly leather upholstery is original and displays a gentle patina of careful use consistent with age and low mileage. The interior is very nice and remains original with the sole exception of a newer Blaupunkt AM/FM cassette head unit and speakers, and the mounting plates for the factory-original radio remain with the car. Underhood, the renowned 6.2-litre V-8 engine and ancillary components are factory-correct, well-maintained, and nicely presented throughout. Proper Lucas driving lamps complete the ensemble. An ideal acquisition for the committed Rolls-Royce collector, this 1966 Silver Cloud III DHC will certainly provide its new owner with a great classic touring experience and an ideal entry to a multitude of worthy concours and RROC events anywhere.

1966 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupe
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