1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA

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Lot 265
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé
Coachwork by H J Mulliner

Sold for £ 197,500 (US$ 237,620) inc. premium
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé
Coachwork by H J Mulliner

Registration no. 502 HWR
Chassis no. BC100XA
*One of eight right-hand drive cars in this design
*Long-term (20 years) family ownership in recent times
*Serviced and maintained by Frank Dale & Stepsons
*The ultimate Grande Routière of its day

Footnotes

  • Bentley's magnificent Continental sports saloon has been synonymous with effortless high speed cruising in the grand manner since its introduction on the R-Type chassis in 1952. With the arrival of the final (S-Type) generation of six-cylinder cars in 1955, the Continental lost none of its exclusivity, and this trend continued after the arrival of the V8-engined S2 in 1959. Although the S2 appeared externally unchanged, its performance was considerably enhanced by the new 6,230cc V8 engine. Power-assisted steering was now standard and there was no longer the option of a manual gearbox, Rolls-Royce's own four-speed automatic being the sole offering.

    The S3 is perhaps the ultimate post-war Bentley in terms of appearance, performance and practicality, as well as the last medium sized Bentley to be offered with custom coachwork. H J Mulliner of Chiswick were responsible for some of the most iconic and beautiful coachwork designs on post-war Bentley chassis, especially the Continental variants. Their styling of the R-Type and S1 Continental fastback coupés evolved into the S2 Continental coupé, with the final development being Design No. 2012: the S3 Continental coupé. The lines were very similar to those of its predecessor, with wraparound rear windscreen and a graceful appearance. But H J Mulliner's S3 Continental was produced in far fewer numbers, with just eight cars in right-hand drive and a further three in left-hand drive.

    The Bentley Continental was, of course, exclusively a coachbuilt automobile. The firms of H J Mulliner, Park Ward, and James Young all offered bodies on the Continental S2 chassis. Quad headlamps were the S3's major styling innovation, and on many of the H J Mulliner, Park Ward-bodied Continentals were contained in slanting nacelles, giving rise to these models' 'Chinese Eye' sobriquet. Fog lights were still fitted, but these no longer also functioned as flashing indicators; instead, the indicators on the new models were incorporated into redesigned sidelights, positioned on the front of the wings. Headlamps aside, the most significant change was to the S3's engine, which boasted an increased compression ratio, larger carburettors, and a Lucas vacuum-advance distributor, modifications that raised peak power by some 7%. There was also improved power steering to ease maneuvering at parking speeds. A further minor change was the adoption of smaller bumper over-riders and a slightly reduced radiator height of about 1.5 inches, giving a sloping bonnet line and improving forward vision. Individual front seats and arm rests became a standard feature, and more powerful lighting and additional indication lights and switches on the instrument panel were introduced, presenting a far more modern feel to the last of the S-series Bentleys.

    Chassis number 'BC100XA' is one of the original eight cars built in right-hand drive and was completed in March of 1963. It was supplied by H R Owen to its first owner, Mr S J Chaffrey of Sutton Coldfield in Warwickshire. It was originally completed in velvet green with a beige leather interior, and was fitted with a Triplex roof panel. In October 1964 the Continental was purchased by Mr J Elliott of Yorkshire, who retained it until 1971 when it was supplied by Jack Barclay to its third owner, Mr D Wheeler of Warren Street in London. In more recent times, 'BC100XA' has belonged to the same family in central London, for approximately the last 20 years. It has been serviced and mechanically maintained in workshops of renowned marque specialists, Frank Dale & Stepsons, and drives just as one would expect, with smooth transmission and effortless power. It comes complete with all of its original tools, including the small took kit located in the boot, together with its handbook. 'BC100XA' represents a rare opportunity to acquire this greatly admired model, the culmination of H J Mulliner's development in the post-war era.
Contacts
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
1963 Bentley S3 Continental Coupé  Chassis no. BC100XA
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