1975 Rolls-Royce Corniche Coupe
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 30hp 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 manufacturers 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, thereby 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 Rolls-Royce history was the introduction of the Silver Dawn, which was the first model 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. The Cloud evolved through three major model iterations, being the Silver Cloud I, Silver Cloud II and Silver Cloud III until it was superseded by the Silver Shadow.
The Silver Shadow was a very important model for Rolls-Royce. By the mid 1960’s the Cloud was seen as a big car that was not as technologically advanced as some of its competitors. Introduced in 1965, the Silver Shadow was significantly narrower and shorter than the Silver Cloud but it offered more space inside the cabin for its occupants. The car featured a unitary body & chassis construction, disc brakes, independent rear suspension and a hydro pneumatic suspension system licensed from Citroën. In 1967 Rolls-Royce introduced a two-door coupe and also a convertible version of the Silver Shadow which were both very successful models. In 1971 the two-door Silver Shadow was given its own identity and it became known as the Corniche. The Corniche was very successful for Rolls-Royce and 5,146 convertibles and 1,108 coupes were built until production ceased in 1995.
Oldtimer Australia is delighted to offer for sale a 1975 Rolls-Royce Corniche Coupe.
The original build sheets confirm that chassis number CRH21463 is an Australian delivered, factory right-hand drive example that was finished in mediterranean blue M151-3457 with dark blue VM3209 interior. This Mulliner Park Ward Corniche Coupe was delivered on the 11th August 1975.
The car was ordered through Sydney based Rolls Royce agent York Motors for Mr DA Clamp from Rose Bay (Sydney) in New South Wales. There is correspondence on file between York Motors and Rolls-Royce which confirms Mr Clamp was to collect his new Corniche Coupe in the UK. Fortunately the car has its original books, including its service book, which provides some early information about CRH21463. The first and only entry in the service book is dated 14th July 1976 when the car had its ‘Initial 3,000 miles (5,000 km) service’. The car was serviced by Kenning (London) in Upper Montague Street, London, W1H 1RR and the odometer is noted as 4,757km. Note: the car was fitted with a km/hr speedo from new. It is confirmed that Mr Clamp collected his new Corniche Coupe from the Rolls-Royce factory in the UK and used it in the UK/Europe before importing into Australia. Whilst in the UK the car was registered as GHX717N.
It is not known when Mr Clamp imported the car into Australia. There are York Motors service receipts on file from 1986 until 1995. Mr Clamp, moved from Rose Bay in Sydney to Nerang on the Gold Coast at some stage during this period, though he continued to have the car serviced by York Motors in Sydney. Whilst in New South Wales the car was registered as NXC 470 and then in Queensland as 320 PWN. By the late 1990’s, Rolls-Royce specialist John Breadon from the Gold Coast Auto Centre started looking after the car. In 1999 he facilitated the sale of CRH21463 from Clamp to the current owner. Within a few short years a change in his circumstances necessitated the sale of the car once again and it quickly found a new home on the Gold Coast.
The current owner had fallen in love with this stunning Rolls-Royce and he kept in regular contact with the fellow he sold the car to and was able to buy it back again in mid-2004. The car became part of a fabulous collection which included a rare Bentley Continental Flying Spur, a Rolls-Royce Corniche Convertible and a Jaguar E-Type. The owner used his cars and proudly showed them at various Rolls-Royce, Bentley and Jaguar car club events as well as other car shows in and around the Sunshine Coast.
After almost twenty years of ownership, in two stints, it is now time for CRH21463 to find a new custodian.
Today this car presents and drives beautifully. It was repainted and it had the front & rear seats re-trimmed many years ago, most likely in the latter years of Clamp’s ownership. The silver paintwork remains in excellent condition all round, befitting a car of this quality. All of the exterior trim, chrome work and glass are also in very good condition. Purists will note the more modern wheels fitted to the car. This was done when the current owner first purchased CRH21463. All of the panel gaps are excellent and the doors, boot & bonnet shut with minimal effort and just as one would expect.
Inside the cabin the car is just pure luxury. That typical Rolls-Royce leather smell just draws you in once you open the door. You can’t but admire the stunning leather upholstery, all of which is unmarked and in excellent condition but your eye is immediately drawn to the beautiful timber dash and surrounds which is essentially in ‘as new’ condition. You sit comfortably behind the wheel and everything is ‘just right’. Everything looks to work on the car, including the electric windows which are lightning fast and the air conditioning which blows cold air. The car also has cruise control. The only sign of wear is to the carpets, which are still very presentable and are covered by plush navy blue floor mats.
This Corniche starts easily and its engine settles instantly into that ‘silent’ Rolls-Royce idle. The car drives effortlessly and it is very smooth on the road . . . just as you would expect. In fact, CRH21463 is an absolute delight to drive. It’s hard to believe that this car is in excess of forty years old!
In summary, this Rolls-Royce Corniche Coupe is stunning and it offers an incredible amount of car for the money. As the last of the elegant chrome bumper cars this is perhaps the most desirable of the Corniche range.
Accompanying the car is the book set (with service book), the original build sheets and delivery invoice, some older service records from the 1980’s/1990’s, full service records from the current owner’s time with the car and a jack. The car is currently registered in Queensland (as 03RRC) with an expiry date off the 7th May 2019 and it has a current Queensland Roadworthy Certificate.
Today the odometer reads 33,678km, which is understood to be 133,678km.
– an Australian delivered factory right-hand drive example.
– two long term owners for the majority of the car’s life.
– full book set in good condition.
– fabulous colour scheme.
– just a beautifully presented driving car.
– a unique and rare opportunity with just over 1,000 Corniche Coupes built.
Listed Price AUD $95,000
- Rolls-Royce Corniche
- 33678 km
- 6750 cc