1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer
Lot 415
1937 Bentley 4¼-Litre All Weather Tourer Chassis no. B170KT Engine no. W9BP
Sold for £135,700 (US$ 221,538) inc. premium

Lot Details
1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer 1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer 1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer 1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer 1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer 1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer 1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer 1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer 1937 Bentley 4 1/4 Tourer
1937 Bentley 4¼-Litre All Weather Tourer
Coachwork by Thrupp & Maberly

Registration no. ELD 660
Chassis no. B170KT
Engine no. W9BP

Footnotes

  • By the end of the 1930s the 'Derby' Bentley, introduced towards the beginning of that decade following the firm's take-over by Rolls-Royce, had undergone a number of significant developments, not the least of which was an increase in bore size in 1936 that upped the capacity to 4,257cc, a move that coincided with the adoption of superior Hall's Metal bearings. This new engine was shared with the equivalent Rolls-Royce - the 25/30hp - and as had been the case with the preceding 3½-Litre model, enjoyed a superior specification in Bentley form, boasting twin SU carburettors, raised compression ratio and a more 'sporting' camshaft. Thus the new 4¼-Litre model offered more power than before while retaining the well-proven chassis with its faultless gear-change and servo-assisted brakes. It was the construction of modern highways in Continental Europe, enabling cars to travel at sustained high speeds, that had prompted the introduction of the Hall's Metal bearings and would lead eventually to the adoption of on an 'overdrive' gearbox and improved lubrication system on Bentley's peerless Grand Routier, improvements which coincided with the introduction of the 'M'-series cars in 1939.
    The Derby Bentley was, of course, an exclusively coachbuilt automobile. Of the 2,442 manufactured, almost 50 percent were bodied by Park Ward in a limited number of styles. This particluar example though, wears all weather tourer coachwork by the respected London-based firm of Thrupp & Maberly, a concern noted for a succession of coachbuilding innovations during the 1920s and 1930s. Chassis number 'B170KT' was delivered new October 1937 to its first owner The Rt Hon Viscount Bridport and originally UK registered 'ELD 660'. Records suggest only three examples were bodied with this very handsome four-door pillar-less all weather tourer coachwork. The only other owner listed on the accompanying (copy) chassis card is E Valls, residing at The Spanish Embassy in London SW1, who acquired the car in January 1947.
    Exported to the USA, date unknown. The car was subsequently sold in March 2008 to a new owner via Gullwing Motor Cars Inc and Chicago Classic Cars of Long Island. Upon repatriation to the UK in 2008, the car was cosmetically restored and purchased by the immediately preceding owner at auction in June of that same year. The current owner, a well-known and discerning collector, purchased the Bentley at Bonhams' Goodwood Revival Meeting sale in September 2009 (Lot 230).
    Since acquisition the car has been reregistered with its original number, 'ELD 660', and benefited from some £46,000 spent with marque specialists A&S Engineering of Alton, Hampshire to bring it up to absolutely tip-top condition. Work carried out included re-coring the radiator in original style, relining the brakes, overhauling the water pump, replacing the hub bearings, fitting a new inlet manifold, reconditioning the carburettors, installing new engine/gearbox under-trays and – last but not least – the specialist manufacture to pattern of one Bentley jack handle at a cost of over £460 (see detailed invoices on file). With safety and convenience in mind, the car has been equipped with flashing indicators (the semaphores work also) and a cigar lighter socket (concealed beneath the dashboard) for the attachment of electrical accessories.
    Finished in sage green with similar interior trim, matching hood and tailored hood bag, 'B170KT' has been fully serviced and is presented in excellent condition. The car comes complete with two sets of keys, 'T' handle for opening the boot, fitted tool kit in the boot plus the usual wheel mallet, jack, crank handle and jack handle in the engine compartment. It is offered with the aforementioned invoices, build sheet, import documentation, DVLA correspondence, MoT/tax to October 2012 and Swansea V5C registration document.
Auction information

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