Made in England: Home-grown Rolls makes $332,000 in Bonhams' UK classic car debut

It was another notable weekend in the classic car market, as Bonhams concluded their first ever UK sale of 'Collectors' Motor Cars and Automobilia'.  The auction, which took place in Oxford on March 5, grossed an excellent total of £1.2m.

The top lot and undoubted highlight was made by one of the classic car makers - a stunning Rolls-Royce Phantom II Weymann Sports Saloon.  Created in 1929, this vintage vehicle was supposedly the last model designed by the genius behind it all - Henry Royce.

In wonderful condition, this 40/50hp model features beautiful black and silver bodywork and a stunning red leather interior.  It was originally purchased by one Captain Leslie George Wylde, renowned for his penchant for fancy sporting motor cars.

Just under 20 years later, in 1947, the car was put into storage and remained in hibernation for an astounding three decades.  Its unusually good condition is primarily attributed to this fact.


This classic 1929 Rolls sold for £205,000

Purchased in 2003 for another Captain, Bill Borchert Larson, the car was lovingly restored and has clocked up very few miles.  A cracking example of 1920s British motor manufacturing in all its original glory, the Phantom II surpassed its pre-sale estimate to realise £205,000.

It was also appropriate that, in its 50th anniversary year, a Jaguar E-type should do so well.  A 1962 3.8 litre Series 1 Roadster was offered by the auctioneers; this elegant and agile machine has been a favourite with collectors and investors for decades.  It trounced its estimate of £60,000-80,000 to sell for £100,500.

The sale included many more excellent vehicles.  With such success at the first attempt, it is likely that Bonhams will return to British soil again to offer more classic cars in the future. 

And the week is capped off with another excellent auction at Amelia Island, USA, where Gooding and Company are offering Ferraris and Bentleys to the lucky - and rather spoilt - car collectors of the world.


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