1926 Rolls Royce 20hp Doctors Coupe,
Lot 652
1926 Rolls Royce 20hp Doctors Coupe, Chassis no. GCK24 Engine no. G1518
Sold for £22,137 (US$ 37,209) inc. premium
Lot Details
1926 Rolls Royce 20hp Doctors Coupe

Registration no. IB 899
Chassis no. GCK24
Engine no. G1518


  • Up until the arrival of the 20hp Rolls-Royce in 1922, the Silver Ghost, with its impeccable Edwardian roots, was the Derby company’s only model. But the new six-cylinder smaller car, of which this is a 1926 example, was specifically created for the very different post-war years. Announced in October 1922, the 20hp (3,127cc) model was the first Rolls-Royce to be equipped with overhead valves. The chassis price was £1,100 and the 20hp was destined to outsell both the Ghost and its Phantom I successor, and by the time production ceased in 1929 to make way for the 20/25 a total of 1,241 had been built. The design is interesting because it reflects Royce’s preoccupation with contemporary American automotive trends. Thus the ‘Twenty’ features unitary construction of the engine and gearbox, the latter being a three-speed unit with a central ball change, together with ‘Hotchkiss drive’ rear axle. Favourably received as the Twenty was, its central gearchange was not well liked and when four-wheel, servo-assisted brakes were introduced in 1925, a four-speed ’box with right-hand, gated change replaced the original three-speeder.
    Chassis number ‘GCK24’ was sold new to coachbuilders Hooper & Co on 9th July 1926 and first owned by one E S Markower, Esq as recorded on accompanying copy chassis cards and order form. Two subsequent owners are listed: Sir William Davison, of Kensington Park Gardens, London W12 from January 1928 and Mr John S Lytle, of County Tyrone, Northern Ireland from January 1932. The current registration, ‘IB 899’, was issued in County Armagh. The car has formed part of the Collection for at least the past 20 years, the accompanying old-type Swansea V5 recording no changes of keeper since 1984. Other documentation includes two expired MoTs (1978 and 1982) and an old-style green logbook. Issued in 1972, the latter lists one William McDonagh, of County Armagh as owner at that time, with a C E Browne, of Brentwood, Essex as ‘1st Change’ dated 1975. It should be noted that Hooper is recorded as bodying the car as an ‘enclosed landaulet’ while the green logbook states that it is a ‘saloon’. When the current body was fitted is not known.