<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K

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Lot 93
1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer
Replica Coachwork in the London-Edinburgh style by Kenneth Neve

US$ 750,000 - 850,000
£ 580,000 - 650,000
1913 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer
Replica coachwork in the London-Edinburgh style by Kenneth Neve

Chassis no. 2371
Engine no. 10.K

7,428cc L-Head Inline 6-cylinder Engine
50bhp at 1,500rpm
3-Speed Manual Transmission
4-Wheel Leaf Spring Suspension
Rear Drum Brakes

*Originally supplied to noted Parisian Jeweler Albert Janesich
*One of only 188 London-Edinburgh Silver Ghosts built
*Comprehensively restored inside and out
*Ideal long-distance touring car eligible for many exclusive events


THE LONDON-EDINBURGH SILVER GHOST

Sporting, sensationally styled, and as reliable as the proverbial Swiss-watch, it is little wonder that the London-Edinburgh Silver Ghost has been coveted throughout the century since its introduction.

Chassis number 1701, the car that gave the new model its "London-to-Edinburgh" name, was just the second chassis built to a new specification with a massive torque tube to carry the propeller shaft, strengthened rear axle casings and, in the case of the first two cars in the series, inverted semi-elliptic rear springs. The 1701 carried an elegant light tourer body by Holmes of Derby Ltd., carriage builders since the nineteenth century. With engine compression ratio upgraded, a larger carburetor and a skimpy wind-cheating body, 1701 was later to record a spectacular 101mph over the flying half mile at Brooklands with Edward W. Hives (later to become Chairman of Rolls-Royce) at the wheel. Not only could Rolls-Royce satisfy the market that demanded the most comfortable formal cars built in the best traditional coach-building traditions, but here was a sporting car with few, if any equals, from a miniscule and exclusive peer group of manufacturers.

All these much publicized promotional exploits were driven by the similar stunts promoted by arch self-publicist S.F. Edge at the helm of Napier, perhaps Rolls-Royce's most serious rival for the luxury car market. That Rolls-Royce were more effective in their marketing exploits and their engineering-excellence is substantiated by Edge's retirement from Napier in 1912. Shortly after, Napier withdrew from motor car manufacture in 1924. Arguably, the introduction of the new "London-to-Edinburgh" Silver Ghost was one of the final nails in Napier's coffin.

The London to Edinburgh and return run—some 800 miles travelling north mainly via The Great North Road and returning down the west side of the country—had captured the headlines and Rolls-Royce's subsequent order book, with a raft of new more sporting owner-drivers, undoubtedly put pressure on the manufacturing facilities at Derby.

Contemporary Rolls-Royce advertising in 1911 featured Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost Chassis no.1701 and its remarkable London to Edinburgh and return journey that year, describing the feat in the following terms:

The car.... was a standard Six-Cylinder Rolls-Royce chassis of 40/50h.p.

The trial... was to demonstrate that the car could travel from London to Edinburgh and back entirely on the top gear, that at the same time it could show an exceptionally economical petrol consumption, and yet attain considerable speed when required.

The result...... the car travelled from London to Edinburgh and back on top gear on a petrol consumption of 24.32 miles per gallon, afterwards without alteration or adjustment attaining a speed of 78.26 miles per hour on the Brooklands track.


Almost as soon as the company's demonstrator "1701" had completed the original "Top Gear" run between the British Capitals, they wisely sought to capitalize on this success; arguably, the model recalibrated the essence of the brand, echoing the early successes in the Tourist Trophy and other events.

Of the more than 6,700 Silver Ghosts delivered in their epic 19 year production run, only 188 of the "London-to-Edinburgh" cars were built. The first production models were delivered to the coachbuilders in the Spring of 1912 and the last, no. 2699, in October 1913. Of course, that is before one accounts for the numerous cars lost to the ravages of two world wars, making survivors, such as this car extremely rare.

THE MOTORCAR OFFERED

2371 is one of these coveted London to Edinburgh cars, succinctly cross-referenced on its built sheets as being a direct copy of chassis 2148, which itself was a direct copy of the original "1701."

The London-Edinburgh chassis was originally clothed with a "London-Edinburgh" type Torpedo by favored coachbuilders Barker & Co. Much like 1701, it would have looked striking in its original paint scheme of Silver Grey with ivory colored lines and upholstery to match, including an additional leather cushion on the front seat. An unusually detailed factory record notes: "Sporting Rudge-Whitworth detachable rim wire wheels, shod with Dunlop grooved tires were fitted, and the body equipped externally with a large box for the batteries on the step and a full complement of C.A. Vandervell lighting and switchboard. [In addition, there are] multiple Brooks trunks, presumably fitted to the rear and accessories include a Michelin Air Cylinder for its tires, a Cobra horn, and an Elliott Speedometer, reading in kilometers and fitted with the option of an additional clock. All brightwork was finished in nickel." As told, this would have been a sensational looking machine, with the finishing touch being an instruction to "emblazon initials on doors 'A.J.'"

If this listing seems unusually detailed, some of this may stem from the fact that its purchaser, the "A.J." in question was none other than Albert Janesich, a jewelry dealer of considerable repute. The new London-Edinburgh was briefly registered in the U.K. with the appropriate number of "R 1733," then supplied across the English Channel to him Mr. Janesich parted with the considerable sum of GBP1350 for his own hand tailored London-Edinburgh and took delivery in July 1913.

Those same records chart maintenance overseen by the factory well into the late 1920s, by which time Mr. Janesich's agency had moved from 12 Rue Lafayette to 21 Avenue Montaigne. He certainly must have continued to be haring around Paris in his London-Edinburgh, as a small accident befell the car in 1927, necessitating a full rebuild by the factory!

Like with many of these cars, the history became unknown until its rediscovery in Paris decades later in the 1990s. Two noted sleuths of early cars, famed book collector Peter Richley (whose collection is now housed in the Revs Institute in Naples, Florida) and Michael Sapsford were alerted to the existence of a Silver Ghost chassis just outside of Paris; that chassis was #2371. Recalling the discovery today, Mr. Sapsford reports that the frame was in remarkably good order, with old grey paint evident. Pain they felt was quite possibly the original. The tale that went with the car, being that it had been stripped around the wartime to avoid being taken by the Germans, and hidden in the loft of a house.

Messers. Richley and Sapsford would part with #2371. It ultimately arrived with Rolls-Royce collector Walter Wilson in Ireland. Mr. Wilson, working with James Black, commissioned a comprehensive restoration to return it to its original guise. At this point, missing components were made or sourced. These included its engine, which is a period 1914 unit, numbered 10.K, understood to have been originally fitted to chassis 37MA. An interesting coincidence was the availability of the remade coachwork, which Kenneth Neve had fitted to the original London-Edinburgh car during that car's restoration in 1970, now removed from that car in its later restoration, it was fitted to #2371 and remains on it today, with kicker plates attesting to this.

Walter Wilson would own the car for the next two decades, enthusiastically enjoying it before passing it on to the most recent custodian in 2014. Cosmetically the restoration stands up well today, with a recent re-trim of the interior in the finest leather available. A London-Edinburgh Silver Ghost is a truly versatile and usable touring car. With its history charted on its build sheets and in the noted reference work on these cars, "The Edwardian Rolls-Royce" by John Fasal and Bryan Goodman, this is a well-known and great looking example of the model.
Contacts
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
<b>1913 Rolls-Royce 40/50HP Silver Ghost London-Edinburgh Tourer</b><br />Chassis no. 2371<br />Engine no. 10.K
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