1930 Rolls-Royce Phantom II
Lot 319
1930 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Enclosed Drive Limousine Chassis no. 167XJ Engine no. FC75
Sold for £44,850 (US$ 75,384) inc. premium
Lot Details
1930 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Enclosed Drive Limousine
Coachwork by R Harrison & Son

Registration no. GF 8793
Chassis no. 167XJ
Engine no. FC75


  • The Phantom II Continental was the last Rolls-Royce to be designed under the personal supervision of Henry Royce, before his death in 1933. As its name suggest, this new Rolls-Royce was intended for fast continental touring; indeed, in the 1930s there were few roads in Britain where its outstanding performance could safely be exploited to the full.
    The Phantom II had been introduced in 1929 as a successor to the New Phantom (retrospectively Phantom I) with deliveries commencing in September of that year. Unlike its predecessor, which inherited its underpinnings from the preceding 40/50hp model, the Silver Ghost, the Phantom II employed an entirely new chassis laid out along the lines of that of the smaller 20hp Rolls-Royce. Built in two wheelbase lengths - 144" and 150" - this new low-slung frame, with its radiator set well back, enabled coachbuilders to body the car in the modern idiom, creating sleeker designs than the upright ones of the past.
    The engine too had come in for extensive revision. The PI's cylinder dimensions and basic layout - two blocks of three cylinders, with an aluminium cylinder head common to both blocks - were retained, but the combustion chambers had been redesigned and the 'head was now of the cross-flow type, with inlet and exhaust manifolds on opposite sides. The magneto/coil dual ignition system remained the same as on the PI. The result of these engine changes was greatly enhanced performance, particularly of the Continental model, and the ability to accommodate weightier coachwork. Designed around the short (144") Phantom II chassis and introduced in 1930, the Continental version was conceived as 'an enthusiastic owner driver's car', featuring revised rear suspension, a higher axle ratio and lowered steering column.
    Highly favoured by prominent coachbuilders, the Phantom II chassis provided the platform for some of the truly outstanding designs of its day, getting off to a flying start when a pre-production model ('26EX') designed by Ivan Evernden and made by Barker & Co (Henry Royce's favourite coachbuilder) won the Grand Prix d'Honneur at the Biarritz Concours d'Elegance in September 1930.
    Chassis number '167XJ' was ordered on 23rd October 1929 by Car Mart Ltd of Park Lane, London for their valued customer, U J Phillipson of Richmond, Yorkshire, whose London address was The Marlborough Club in Pall Mall. The short chassis was specified and the enclosed drive limousine coachwork, with accommodation for six passengers, was entrusted to Harrison & Son of Stanhope Street, London. '167XJ' features Harrison's 'British Flexible' coachwork produced by its subsidiary, British Flexible Coachworks Ltd, which had been set up in 1927 to build bodies using its patented method of lightweight fabric construction employing felt joints in the wooden frame and screws encased in rubber bushes. Two spare wheel carriers were specified and a special 28-gallon fuel tank was provided for the longer tour. The car was delivered in April 1930. It seems that '167XJ' remained in the UK until the 1960s, subsequently finding its way to Alabama from whence it returned in 1996.
    Acquired by connoisseur collector, the late Terry Cohn, the Phantom was purchased by the current owner at Bonhams & Brooks' auction at the R-REC's Annual Rally at Towcester Racecourse in June 2001 (Lot 721) when a selection of Terry's Rolls-Royces were offered for sale. Since acquisition the engine has undergone a complete rebuild, the electrics have been rewired, the dynamo overhauled, the radiator re-cored and the rear springs rebuilt. Additionally, the car has been fitted with a Tim Payne overdrive, full-flow oil filter, stainless steel exhaust system, new P100 headlights and new side mirrors.
    This car is illustrated in Those Elegant Rolls-Royce (page 285) and is now offered in attractive cream over brown livery with beige leather upholstery to the chauffeur's compartment and brown velour to the rear. Added refinements include a cocktail cabinet with decanters and glasses, and re-veneered walnut woodwork, while other noteworthy features include twin chromed trumpet horns, a rear mounted luggage trunk and whitewall tyres.
    Extensively rallied to the South of France and Germany as well as the UK, '167XJ' performed very well on a recent test drive, cruising effortlessly at 60mph and possessing good brakes. The car is offered with old-style logbook, sundry restoration invoices, current MoT/tax and Swansea V5 registration document. A very well looked after example offered from enthusiast ownership, this beautiful Phantom II is a genuine 'drive away' purchase.

Saleroom notices

  • The Euro estimate for this car as printed in the catalogue is incorrect, it should be 58,000 - 63,000.
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