1973 Rolls-Royce Corniche Convertible

THE HIGHLIGHTS


• Absolutely gorgeous older restoration
• Stunning condition, with very gentle patina
• Thousands spent on maintenance
• One of only 1,232 Series I Corniche Convertibles made

THE BACKGROUND

Introduced in 1966, the Rolls Royce Corniche was a two-door version of the luxurious Silver Shadow saloon. It was constructed for Rolls-Royce by coachbuilders Mulliner Park Ward in London.
There were two versions of the Corniche available. A two-door coupe, along with a striking and elegant convertible version, which truly suited the Silver Shadow’s stylish lines.
Power came from Rolls-Royce’s venerable 6.75-litre engine, married to a three-speed General Motors Torqueflite transmission with a steering column selector.
Unlike the Silver Shadow, which was very much a car to be driven in by someone else, the Corniche was focused on owner drivers and in its day was one of the most expensive cars that money could buy. But then that's hardly surprising, as each one was hand-built to order.
The car we have here is a Series I Corniche, which is largely regarded as the most desirable as the later Series II cars have thicker rubber bumpers and lack the earlier model’s simple design elegance. 
The car is an older restoration but despite the majority of work being carried out 20 years ago it is still in remarkable condition.

THE HISTORY

The current owner has kept the Corniche as part of a collection of fine British motor cars for the past eight years. 
He's totally loved owning it and has driven it over 5,000 miles in total. However, he's swapping around some of the cars in his collection and has decided that the Rolls-Royce should be sold to make way for a new acquisition.
Prior to him acquiring the car, the Corniche was owned by a fellow enthusiast for a number of years and it was during his ownership that the car was given a very expensive restoration - and also a very, very good one. Little is known of the car’s earlier history before that other than what can be gleaned from documents in its history file.

THE PAPERWORK

There are piles and piles of bills and receipts with this car, kept in a series of folders. Most recently, there is evidence of a mechanical overhaul and a fairly recent service at a cost of over £3,000. 
Going back in time, there are several large bills that show that the car has been diligently maintained and recently it has been looked after by two of the best known Rolls-Royce and Bentley specialists in the UK – Colbrook and Hillier Hill. 
Also in the folders is a receipt for the car’s body restoration in 2001, at which time the paintwork alone cost the previous owner over £15,000. Yes, it was certainly done properly.
In the glove box, The Rolls-Royce has its original owner’s manual and service book and whilst services that were carried out in the 1970s have very little relevance today, they’re still an interesting snapshot of the car’s early life, where it appears to have been supplied new by Kennings of London.

THE EXTERIOR

Finished in deep and lustrous Cardinal Red, this Corniche looks absolutely magnificent. It's a huge car, but the paint finish is truly superb all over and still looks incredible despite being over 20 years old. 
All of the brightwork and trim is also in fine condition, with a very gentle patina showing to some of the chrome parts, but nothing at all to detract from the car’s wonderful overall appearance. It even has the period correct Avon Turbosteel radial tyres fitted, identical to the factory specification.
The cream coloured hood is in fine order and the electric folding mechanism still works exactly how Rolls-Royce intended, while it also comes with a pop-on Tonneau cover that is in equally good condition.

THE INTERIOR

The inside of this car is absolutely glorious. The cream leather is in largely good condition save for some very gentle signs of wear on the driver’s seat base, and the colour scheme is a joy to behold.
All of the walnut trim is in good fettle having been refurbished by the current owner, as are the carpets, door cards and controls. It also has a wonderful period radio-cassette player, complemented by an eight-track player, though the owner reports that this needs an overhaul.
Everything else works beautifully and looks absolutely terrific. Just as you would expect a Royce Rolls to be.

THE MECHANICS

This is a car that has wanted for nothing in terms of its maintenance and has been looked after by specialists for at least the past two decades.
As such, it's no surprise to find that it is in rude health mechanically. The big V8 fires up instantly and is as smooth as you'd expect, showing good oil pressure and holding a steady temperature. The current owner has obviously spent time and money in this department as the carburettors have been rebuilt, the brakes overhauled and the hydraulic reservoir refurbished, the radiator re-cored and the header tank repainted.
The three-speed transmission works as it should, the brakes feel surprisingly powerful and the power steering is finger light. The vendor reports that the car drives exactly as it should  and that it has recently completed a fault free 400-mile round trip to Dorset.

THE APPEAL

This is one of the last truly Craftsman-built Rolls-Royces and is in absolutely impeccable condition inside and out.
It is a credit to its current and previous owners that it still looks as good today as it did when it was restored over two decades ago.
The next owner of this car is guaranteed to fall in love with it. It has a beautiful, gentle patina and looks wonderful from any angle. It is a lovely example with considerable charm.

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Although every care is taken to ensure this listing is as factual and transparent as possible, all details within the listing are subject to the information provided to us by the seller. Car & Classic does not take responsibility for any information missing from the listing. Please ensure you are satisfied with the vehicle description and all information provided before placing a bid.

As is normal for most auctions, this vehicle is sold as seen, and therefore the Sale of Goods Act 1979 does not apply. All bids are legally binding once placed. Any winning bidder who withdraws from a sale, is subject to our bidders fee charge. Please see our FAQs and T&C's for further information. Viewings of vehicles are encouraged, but entirely at the seller's discretion.

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Auction FAQs
Auction Details
  • Year 1973
  • Make Rolls Royce
  • Model Corniche
  • Colour Cardinal Red
  • Mileage 100,756 Miles
  • Engine size 6750
  • Seller Type Private
  • County Suffolk
  • Country United Kingdom
  • Auction ends
Bidding history
31 Bids
  • Fi•••• £55,000 14/11/21
  • PM•••• £54,500 14/11/21
  • Fi•••• £54,000 14/11/21
  • PM•••• £53,500 14/11/21
  • Fi•••• £53,000 14/11/21
  • PM•••• £52,500 14/11/21
  • Fi•••• £52,000 14/11/21
  • PM•••• £51,500 14/11/21
  • Fi•••• £51,000 14/11/21
  • PM•••• £50,500 14/11/21

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