1965 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud III Drop Head Coupe by Mulliner Park Ward
The legend that was to become Rolls Royce was founded in May 1904 when a deal was struck between Frederick Henry Royce and Charles Stewart Rolls. Shortly after the first Rolls Royce motor car, the Rolls-Royce 10 hp, was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show in December 1904. It was agreed that Rolls Royce would initially manufacture four different models being a two cylinder 10hp model, a three cylinder 15hp model, a four cylinder 20hp model and a six cylinder 20hp model. It was immediately apparent that to manufacture their cars Rolls Royce would require a larger factory and the decision was made to establish their headquarters and manufacturing facility on the outskirts of Derby in the east midlands of England.
On the 15th March 1906 the company Rolls Royce Limited was formed and during this year Royce had been developing an improved six-cylinder model with more power than the 30hp. Initially designated the 40/50hp, this was the company’s first all-new model that was also to become known as the Silver Ghost.
Like all car manufactures Rolls Royce was impacted by the First World War, however, post war the company made a strategic decision to manufacture a cheaper smaller car, enter the Rolls Royce 20hp. This model was a success and produced alongside the Silver Ghost and its successor the Phantom ensuring the Rolls Royce motor car company would survive and prosper.
In 1931 Rolls Royce acquired the Bentley motor car company.
Post the Second World War a significant milestone in Roll Royce history was the introduction of the Silver Dawn, which was the first model to be built with a factory built body. In 1955 Rolls Royce introduced the Silver Cloud and for the next eleven years this model was at the cornerstone of Rolls Royce production. Throughout history Rolls Royce made their chassis’ available to specialist coachbuilders, however, by the late 1950’s and early 1960’s coach built motor cars had become extremely rare and they were built in very small numbers for the ‘rich and famous’. One of the more interesting and exclusive coach built models from this era was the Silver Cloud III Coupe and Drop Head Coupe by Mulliner Park Ward. From our research it is not clear as to exactly how many of these cars were actually built, but it is around three hundred in total of which certainly less than one hundred were the Drop Head Coupes (design 2045, by Koren) making it an extremely rare car.
Oldtimer Australia is delighted to offer a 1965 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud III Drop Head Coupe by Mulliner Park Ward.
According to the factory build sheets chassis number SRJ817C was ordered new through Rolls Royce agent RS Meade Ltd for Sir J (Joseph) Arthur Rank, a British industrialist who was head and founder of the Rank Organisation and a pioneer of the British film industry. The car was ordered in ming blue with off white leather upholstery and blue carpets. It is not known whether Rank actually took delivery of the car or in fact sold it very soon after acquisition as there is information on file to suggest that the car was actually delivered new to a Mr K Wylie Esq of Knaresborough in the north of England. Wylie owned the car a short time before it was sold through London based Rolls Royce specialists Jack Barclay Limited. The car was first registered in the UK as DRX135C.
The cars subsequent history is not known until it was acquired by a dentist from New York in the USA in the mid 1980’s. The car spent the next twenty years in his ownership before being acquired by a Sydney businessman and imported into Australia in 2007. He enjoyed the car for a few years before it was sold through a Rolls Royce specialist to another Sydney businessman in 2010 who throughout his period of ownership continually improved the car.
Today the car presents and drives very well. The car is understood to have been repainted some ten years ago and the paintwork still carries a high gloss. The car has obviously been used as there is the odd light paint scratch or mark evident. All of the chrome and exterior trim are in very good condition. Inside the car is superb. The leather seats, door cards, carpets etc are in excellent condition as is the woodwork, instruments and controls.
Mechanically the car looks to be well sorted. The car starts easily and it settles into a smooth idle. The engine pulls strongly and the gauge shows it has excellent oil pressure and the engine runs cool. Out on the open road the car ’glides along’ and handles as one would expect, the gear changes are smooth and the brakes firm.
The soft top is in good condition and the electronic hood works as it should.
The car has an original Handbook with Power Operated Hood Systems booklet, an original sales brochure and UK price list for the Rolls Royce Silver Cloud III range by Mulliner Park ward, other maintenance books and cards, the original Rolls Royce build sheets and factory documentation, two books on Arthur Rank who ordered the car new, a history file with a number of service receipts, some period photos etc and the original UK number plates DRX135C.
Any coach built Rolls Royce presents a unique opportunity, however, an open top coach built Rolls Royce presents a unique opportunity indeed. This car is Rolls Royce style and elegance personified!
- Rolls Royce Silver Cloud III DHC
- 36793 miles