1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III 40/50hp Sports Saloon  Chassis no. 3BT93 Engine no. X28E
Lot 427
1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III 40/50hp Sports Saloon Chassis no. 3BT93 Engine no. X28E
£75,000 - 90,000
US$ 130,000 - 150,000
Lot Details
1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III 40/50hp Sports Saloon
Coachwork by Freestone & Webb Ltd.

Registration no. 449 YUA
Chassis no. 3BT93
Engine no. X28E


  • The makers of 'The Best Car in the World' exhibited the exciting all new Phantom III on Stand 107 at The Olympia Motor Exhibition in October 1935. The new car represented an entirely new standard of motor car excellence and such was the quality and cost of the new car that production was restricted to 710 examples in a production run curtailed by the War in 1939. It was powered by a V-12 cylinder engine of 7.3 litres, had independent front suspension and an all new cross-braced frame of boxed section. Compared with the Phantom II its successor weighed 8% less and developed 12% more power and these features combined to make what has undoubtedly proved to be one of the World's great Supercars. The forward location of the engine and radiator gave the whole car a new more modern appearance and provided the bespoke coachbuilder with the opportunity to create innovative new streamlined coachwork. The Motor magazine summed up the new car in the following terms:-
    "......a car which is a joy to handle and which, in its perfection of workmanship and finish, is also an example of engineering at its finest level. It is inspiring to realise that this leading expression of the art of building automobiles, with its unique international reputation, should be produced by British designers and work people."

    Chassis number 3BT93 came off test at Derby in March 1937. It featured the low rake steering column and was set up for town work and touring in the U.K. Detailed extra specification included a Cobra-type bulb horn and extended bonnet length. It was despatched to Freestone & Webb Ltd. where it was clothed with sports saloon coachwork, liveried in steel blue and black to body design 1782. The interior was luxuriously upholstered in blue leather and adjustable front bucket seats were specified. George H. Spencer, a knitwear manufacturer from Lutterworth, was the proud first owner of 3BT93 having ordered the car through Grimshaw Leather Co. Ltd. of Sunderland via Dex Garages. The car was first registered AJU 600 on 16th June 1937. The next recorded owner of the car was E.T.C. Brinton in 1955 and in July 1962 it was offered for sale by celebrated Rolls-Royce dealers, Simmons of Mayfair, with a noted mileage of 80,000 miles. At that time the common modification was made from hydraulic tappets to solid tappets – a real advantage. At some time during the 1960s 3BT93 was fitted with engine number X28E which came from a 1937 Phantom III Windovers limousine. 3BT93 is next recorded in California in 1969 owned by Phantom III aficionado Mark Tuttle and later by Fred Buess. During the present ownership of a noted Rolls-Royce collector in Ireland the car has been extensively recommissioned and re-wired by Allan Glew, with new flasher units discreetly fitted although the original semaphores have been retained in working order. The interior has been re-upholstered in blue leather by noted specialist Gary H. Wright, new carpets and head cloth have been fitted and the car furnished with new lambswool over-rugs. Interior wood cappings and dashboard fascia have been refurbished to a high standard. Other recent expenditure has included the fitting of new tyres and an original radio modernised by The Vintage Wireless Co. of Sale.
    The car is fully equipped for long distance touring and furnished with Ace wheel discs, encased side-mounted spare wheel, rear view mirror, twin trumpet horns, centre-mounted driving light, a complete and correct tool kit and of course carries the distinctive 'Kneeling Lady' radiator mascot.

    Only this year this car was the lead car in the R-R.E.C. Ireland Section Tour to Monmouth, Crewe and the R-R.E.C. Annual Rally at Rockingham Castle. The car comes to the sale from Ireland but was MoT tested in the U.K. up to July 2011. It comes with copies of Factory Order and Build Sheets and a Swansea registration document although the car is not currently MoT'd or licenced in the U.K.
  1. Rob Hubbard
    Specialist - Motor Cars
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    United Kingdom
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