1974 Rolls-Royce Corniche
Few owners, the previous for 25 years; only 25,700 miles indicated; recently serviced; gearbox, brakes and suspension overhauled; new front tyres; working air con; lovely paintwork; a beautiful car with a whisper-quiet engine that looks stunning in Larch Green
Launched in 1966 as a two-door version of the Silver Shadow, the coachbuilt Mulliner Park Ward Coupe was a superior car to the saloon on which it was based. With fabulously elegant coachwork designed by Bill Allen, each and every one was handbuilt by MPW in a necessarily lengthy process that took all of 20 weeks and resulted in a price some 50% higher than the standard Silver Shadow.
Only the very finest materials were used with different seats and dash to the Shadow, engine power went up by 10% and tweaks to the suspension and steering geometry gave an even better ride. Demand for these magnificent cars was so great that the waiting list was measured in years, not months, a state of affairs that resulted in them being given their own model name, Corniche, in March 1971.
Reassuringly exclusive, only 1,108 Coupes were made before production ceased at the end of 1981, though a convertible version continued to be made as the flagship model in the Rolls-Royce range until 1996.
As copies of the factory build sheets confirm, this Corniche was ordered new in July 1973 by a Mr Alan Firmin of Martin Walter Ltd in Kent (Vauxhall/Bedford distributors and owners of the Dormobile brand). Finished in Larch Green with gold pinstripes and a Beige Vaumol hide interior, it was delivered to Mr Firmin in March 1974.
Nothing is known of the car’s subsequent history but in 1993 it was acquired by a Staffordshire gentleman in whose family it was to remain for the next 25 years before appearing in a Brightwells auction in 2018 as part of a deceased estate. At this point any service history had sadly gone astray, the catalogue description at the time recording that it was one of two Rolls-Royces owned by the family and had been kept garaged and used very sparingly, the odometer reading at that time being an unwarranted 21,652 miles.
Our vendor acquired the car from that sale and has maintained it carefully ever since. Invoices show that in the current ownership it has had the following work carried out: automatic gearbox reconditioned; hydraulic system overhauled with various new seals and pipes; new accumulators; brakes overhauled with new or reconditioned calipers, pads and hoses (including hand brake); new rear suspension springs and mountings; new front suspension springs and dampers; new ball joints; new front and rear exhaust sections; new rear axle straps; air conditioning system overhauled and converted to modern gas; new petrol gauge sender; new front tyres; new battery; underbody repairs; full service plus various other minor items.
The odometer now shows 25,690 miles which cannot be warranted but the car certainly looks very well indeed with a lovely interior and excellent paintwork which is believed to have been resprayed to a high standard in the not-too-distant past. It has been starting promptly and driving beautifully as we have moved it around on site with good oil pressure and an engine that is so quiet you can barely tell whether it is running or not.
Documentation includes the aforementioned build sheets and recent invoices, an original Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow handbook, 19 old tax discs from 1986 - 2010, plus two old MOTs issued in 2015 and 2018 (the car now being MOT-exempt).
One of the most attractive examples we have seen, this rare and beautifully presented Corniche turns every journey into an occasion and will draw crowds of admirers wherever it goes.
For more information contact James on 07970 309907 or email [email protected]
Reg No: SKM493M
Chassis Number: CRH17199
Engine Number: 17199
Engine Size: 6750
Docs: V5C; two old MOTs; 19 old tax discs; recent invoices; handbook; copies of factory build sheets
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