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Lot 112: Rolls-Royce Silver Dawn

Classic Car, Motorcycle & Automobilia, Brightwells Auctioneers and Valuers (24 June 2009)

The Silver Dawn was produced by Rolls-Royce at their Crewe works between 1949 and 1955. It was the first Rolls-Royce car to be offered with a factory built body which it shared, along with its chassis, with the Bentley MkVI until 1952 and then the Bentley R-Type until production finished in 1955. The car was intended as an export only model and most were left-hand drive with column-gear shift. Only with the R-Type based model was it officially available on the home market, these right-hand drive cars having a much nicer floor change as found in the MkVI. A mere 785 were produced between 1949 and 1955, as opposed to over 7,500 Bentleys over the same time period. Early models had a different dashboard from their Bentley counterparts. Later models were differentiated only by the entwined R-R logos on the gauges, hubcaps and engine covers, plus the different bonnet and radiator. The in-line six-cylinder engine had overhead inlet and side exhaust valves and had a capacity of 4,257cc until 1951 when it was enlarged to 'Big Bore' 4,566cc. The carburettor was a single downdraught Stromberg until 1952 when it was replaced by a Zenith. A four-speed manual gearbox was fitted to all cars at first with a three-speed automatic becoming an option in 1952 and standard in 1953. The suspension was independent at the front using coil springs, while at the rear the live axle used half elliptic leaf springs. The car had a separate chassis made with traditional riveted construction until 1953 after which it was welded. Servo assisted 12.25-inch drum brakes were used, hydraulically operated at the front but retaining mechanical operation at the rear. Although most cars were fitted with factory built bodies, others were supplied to external coachbuilders. First registered in January 1954, this Silver Dawn was first owned by the Chairman of the Birmingham Post & Mail Group and spent much of its early life in that city. It was bought by the current vendor about ten years ago from well-known Rolls and Bentley dealer Ivor Bleaney, and is said to be in lovely condition throughout. Fitted with automatic transmission and a factory steel sunroof, it has always been well maintained in the current ownership and is said to drive beautifully with a current MOT and tax.

Lot Details
Auction Classic Car, Motorcycle & Automobilia
Brightwells Auctioneers and Valuers, Leominster
TypeCar
Lot Number112
Estimate£35000-£38000
Outcome NOT SOLD
Hammer Price-
Hammer Price (inc premium)-
Year1954
Condition rating
Registration numberOLM 990
Mileage-
Chassis numberSOG38
Engine numberS19G
Engine capacity (cc)4566
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors