When Sir Henry Royce conceived the Silver Ghost his mind was on producing a piece of engineering of the finest quality that would provide the most powerful and luxurious motoring then available, combined with indestructible reliability and yet all with a certain poise and finesse unequalled in its day by any other manufacturer. The Silver Ghost was designed for high speed touring in the maximum comfort leaving both machine and driver in an unstressed state at the end of the days journey. Chassis no.2018 surely is a tribute to Sir Henry Royces vision.
2018, a nickel finish, parallel bonnet Silver Ghost was despatched from the factory on 14th June 1912 and delivered to Barkers at Shepherds Bush where it was fitted with a high-sided Torpedo Phaeton body. It was built to the order of Dr. Frank Tidswell, a noted Sydney surgeon. 2018 was used sparingly by the doctor and in the 1920s the doctor had Rolls-Royce provide the new self-starting facility, involving the fitting of a replacement sump. In 1957 the car was discovered at Nowra in derelict condition although the chassis and mechanical components were remarkably complete. The car was subsequently acquired by Derek Hartley of South Australia who fitted a Maharaja-style Parade body and completed the restoration.
The car returned to the U.K. in 1971 and was acquired by the present owner in 1991. A detailed restoration was embarked upon and the Parade body disposed of. The new owner decided to restore the car to its original Barker Torpedo Phaeton specification, using original Barker drawings to replicate as closely as possible the original design. A meticulous mechanical restoration was carried out as required and the car has since proved its mettle on so many occasions on three Continents.
In 1993 it took part in the Alpine Trial Re-enactment, the following year completed the John OGroats to Lands End Rally. In 1995 it rallied in America, 1998 in Norway, 1999 in Spain and The Pyranees and has rallied in Australia and New Zealand as well as completing the 1997 Re-enactment of the 1907 Scottish Reliability Trial. The car has proved consistently reliable on all these occasions and has been progressively improved by its present owner to ensure trouble-free motoring. It enjoys the benefit of the big carburettor and the high compression pistons fitted give the car 60hp or more on tap.
Modifications carried out to enhance the motoring capability of the car include overdrive on second and third gears, power-steering, Lumenition ignition, larger rear brakes, rev counter, oil filter, gradient gauge, thermostat, a visual oil level gauge on off-side of sump, new petrol tank with accessible filler cap and petrol gauge, alternator and modern oil seals in the gearbox. All modifications have been discretely carried out and original parts retained to enable the car to be restored to original specification.
The car is now superbly presented to the highest possible standards, equipped with CAV electric lamps, matching rear-view mirrors, side wind-deflectors to the windscreen and the most comprehensively equipped dashboard we have seen on a Silver Ghost incorporates a CAV switch panel, a Jones speedometer converted to a rev counter, Cambridge thermometer, fuel pressure gauge, dash clock, Tapley gradient meter, double Elliott speedometer and a superb period dash lamp. The Apollo horn fitted corresponds with the cars year of manufacture.
The coachwork is magnificently presented in ivory livery, subtly lined in maroon and the car is furnished with deep-buttoned red upholstery with red carpets. Modern indicators have been fitted as a safety measure. Full weather equipment includes a one-man hood and full tonneau covers.
One would look a long way to find a more comprehensively equipped Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost, absolutely ready for the long-distance tour in every respect and from such an appreciative and careful home. R 1462 only comes to the market as its owner recognises advancing years and is anxious that the car which has served him so well for his 12 years of ownership will pass into appreciative hands.
This proven drivers car comes with copy Factory Build Sheets, Swansea V5 registration document, current licence and a long MoT certificate.