1925 Bentley 3-Litre
Lot 240
Formerly the property of H.A. Stonor, offered from the Sharpe Family Collection,1925 Bentley 3 Litre Tourer Chassis no. 886 Engine no. 890
Sold for £119,100 (US$ 145,154) inc. premium

1925 Bentley 3-Litre

Lot Details
1925 Bentley 3-Litre 1925 Bentley 3-Litre 1925 Bentley 3-Litre 1925 Bentley 3-Litre 1925 Bentley 3-Litre 1925 Bentley 3-Litre 1925 Bentley 3-Litre
Formerly the property of H.A. Stonor, offered from the Sharpe Family Collection
1925 Bentley 3 Litre Tourer
Coachwork by Gurney Nutting

Chassis no. 886
Engine no. 890


  • This handsome Vintage Bentley is offered for sale for the first time in more than 40 years and is a well documented example with a known history from its earliest days. Much of the credit for its extensive documentation rests with former owner H.A. Stonor who diligently researched the car's following his acquisition in 1963 and when he was able to correspond with and find information first hand from former owners.

    Mr. Stonor traces its early days back to an advertisement in Motor magazine on 18th November 1924, where it was listed for sale care of Stanford & Gray Ltd. of London's Regent Street as 'New Bentley long chassis, with Gurney Nutting 5 seater touring body, complete with 2 spare wheels, 4 wheel brakes etc. most luxurious car'! This actually contradicts the Works records which note it as a Vanden Plas body, but correlate with its coach builder plates which it is believed to have worn throughout its life, suggesting that the works records are an anomaly (it is also not listed in the published VDP records).

    On New Year's Day 1925 it was registered with its first keeper, E. Grice of Lee-on-Solent, Hants. The Bentley was serviced by the Works for the first two years of its life before being sold to D.R. Padmore of Solihull after which it was maintained by local Birmingham Bentley Agents Henry Garner until 1937. Its custodian through the war years was J.H. Bennett also of Solihull, who in 1944 gave the car to Dr. Bernard Blaxhill, on the understanding that he would revive its then poor condition. Blaxhill proceeded to spend the ensuing six years refurbishing it. Rather sadly shortly after its completion the Bentley received some front end damage while parked on the roadside. After all his hard work Dr. Blaxhill couldn't face redoing it again, so he in turn gave the car to a fresh enthusiast keen to return it to the road, that being a James B. Harper of Henley-in-Arden. The next rebuild necessitated the fitting of a new front axle and a steering box and column, which were actually from a 4 1/2 Litre, at the same time new Rudge Whitworth wheels were constructed and further cosmetic work was also undertaken.

    The car would have just one further owner before it was purchased by Stonor in April 1963. By this point the car was again quite mechanically worn and so was entrusted to known Vintage Bentley expert Tony Townshend, who carried out considerable work including the fitting of a 3:53 crown wheel and pinion and sloper carburettors.

    Later that year Stonor shipped the 3 Litre to his home in Malaya, where he enthusiastically used and campaigned the car for the next few years. It was a regular sight at motor sport events in the Far East including the Gap Hill Climb where it won its class in December 1963.

    In 1968 it returned to the UK and was acquired by the present owners, the Sharpe Family who actively assembled a collection that would number more than 200 automobiles, before the collection's dispersal in 2005. Retained at that time, it was intended that the car would be refurbished after its four decades of slumber, and that with theoretical more time would allow this and the Rolls in this auction to be regularly used. In reality this work has taken longer than expected and has been completed within the last year, consequently the decision has been made to pass the car on to new ownership.

    Smartly presented in Royal blue over black and with new light grey upholstery, the Bentley is accented with freshly replated nickel trim. A full complement of weather equipment in black double duck allows for use in all seasons. Mechanically, the engine has been taken down and overhauled, but the car should be considered as probably requiring running in and debugging owing to its long period without active road use.

    Overall, this is a good looking open vintage touring Bentley with an interesting pedigree and long current ownership.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note the chassis and engine number are transposed in the catalogue, and should read: Chassis no. 890 Engine no. 886
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations


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Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:
A successful bidder at this sale will be required to pay Bonhams 1793 Limited ("Bonhams") a premium calculated as follows:

25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at 20% will be payable on the amount of the premium.

The premium is payable for the services to be provided by Bonhams in the Buyer's Agreement which is contained in the catalog for this Sale and for the opportunity to bid for the Lot at the Sale.

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  1. Tim Schofield
    Specialist - Motor Cars
    101 New Bond Street
    London, United Kingdom W1S 1SR
    Work +44 20 7468 5804
    FaxFax: +44 20 7468 5802
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