1912 Rolls-Royce 40/50hp Double Pullman Limousine

Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed auction attracts more significant motor cars

Collectors' Motor cars and Automobilia at Goodwood
29 Jun 2012
Chichester, Goodwood
1912 Rolls-Royce 40/50hp Double Pullman Limousine

1912 Rolls-Royce 40/50hp Double Pullman Limousine


Bonhams is pleased to announce an almost unstoppable momentum of major consignments to the annual Bonhams auction at the famous Goodwood Festival of Speed event on Friday 29th June 2012.

'The Corgi' Rolls-Royce
The 1912 Rolls-Royce 40/50hp Double Pullman Limousine, is one of the most recognisable of the company's famed 'Silver Ghost' production to survive. An opulent and imposing design in name and style it echoed the luxurious 'Pullman' Railway carriages pioneered by American George Pullman, with coachwork constructed by the finest quality coachbuilder of its day Barker & Co. of South Audley St., London.

Unique in its detail, the car has always been cherished. It was delivered new to John M. Stephens in South Croydon, a known connoisseur of the brand who had purchased the first ever Silver Ghost that Rolls-Royce had delivered. Where others of its brethren suffered an inglorious or more utilitarian fate in the First World War, chassis number 1907 remained unharmed and since the Second World War it has graced a handful of the world's finest known automobile collections, those of John C. Sword and Denis de Ferranti in the UK and latterly those of Richard Solove and John M. O'Quinn in the USA.

In the mid-1960s following its sale as part of the famed Scottish Sword Collection it was chosen by Corgi Toys to be a model in their 'Corgi Classics' series, and thereby being identifiable to car enthusiasts of all ages, who named it simply as 'The Corgi'.

It is perhaps best described by Sports Car Market magazine as 'a masterpiece of elephantine Edwardian elegance', and is considered the most recognisable behind 'Axe201', the Silver Ghost that is still retained by the factory.

'The Corgi' celebrates its 100th Birthday this year and is undoubtedly one of the world's most iconic Rolls-Royce motor cars ever built and bidding is expected to surpass £2,000,000.

Ettore Bugatti's Bugatti
The 1938 Bugatti Type 57C formerly owned by Le Patron Ettore Bugatti is another exceptional car on offer at the Goodwood Festival of Speed auction. Equipped with numerous factory-fitted features it is believed to have been constructed to the last design created by Jean Bugatti, and it may have been presented to Le Patron as a birthday present from the workers in his factory.
In 1939, when it became clear that a German invasion of France was imminent, Bugatti factory driver Robert Benoist smuggled the car to a safe hideaway for the duration of the war, only narrowly avoiding capture in the process.

After the war and the death of Le Patron, the car returned to the factory and was a favourite of Pierre Marco, the Director General of Bugatti, who drove it regularly. It remained in the care of the factory until 1959 and during this time was fitted with numerous extra fittings including the three-spoke steering wheel, special Lockheed hydraulic brakes and distinctive radio set.

Subsequent owners have acknowledged how significant the car has been and its purchase bordered on an interview process to determine whether the new buyer was worthy of ownership - Jean de Dobbeleer in Belgium, Lyman Greenlee in Indiana and William Howell of Oklahoma all passed the test, and all of them have cared for the car with meticulous levels of preservation.

The Bugatti has rarely been shown, although visitors to the 1985 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance were privileged to see it alongside the six Bugatti Type 41 Royales. It is expected to sell for over £1,000,000.

James Knight, Group Head of Bonhams Motoring Department, comments, "This sale is gathering tremendous momentum and promises to be one of the most memorable sales in decades. Owners of significant motor cars acknowledge that offering their vehicle in the same sale as The Daniels Collection and other fine entries guarantees them an opportunity to sell their own important car very well."

For further press information please contact Katherine Boyle (Katherine.boyle@bonhams.com / 020 7468 8363) or press@bonhams.com


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to www.bonhams.com

Related auctions