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Car of the Month Selection

Car of the Month - July 1999
Rolls-Royce Phantom II, #141TA, 1935,
Hooper Sidelight Cabriolet

Rolls-Royce Phantom II, Hooper Sidelight Cabriolet

Egypt was part of the British Empire when in 1934 the order for this Rolls-Royce Phantom II came from that country. How carefully the customer in Alexandria had considered that high-profile demands should be satisfied, was shown not only by a Rolls-Royce Phantom II having been decided upon but also by selecting Hooper to produce the coachwork. The London-based coachbuilder ranked as the British Empire's most prominent and even a quick glance at the "Royal Coachbuilder's" customers' list showed the ruling monarchs of Japan, Egypt, Spain and Sweden listed there - and H.M The King George V. of course.

The body on this car (body no. 8326, drawing no. 6028) was built as a Sidelight Cabriolet. This term named a version, which did allow to be used as a Cabriolet with the hood completely folded down, whereas with the hood erected and sidelights in place passengers were by far better protected from dust than on board any tourer. As an alternative only the hood atop the front compartment could be opened - similarly to Cabriolet de Ville - and when performing official duties this allowed to view chauffeur and attendant dressed in livery. This was of some benefit not only to carry out particular order discreetly when that entourage arrived at the Royal Court, but more should the car be made available to His Majesty The King of Egypt during visits to Alexandria.

 Rolls-Royce Phantom II, Hooper Sidelight Cabriolet

Some of the extras listed on the chassis card are wheel discs, a louvred bonnet, a second spare wheel - and a Spirit of Ecstasy mascot to the radiator cap which was no series standard but charged separately at a price of 3£ 17s.6d.

Rolls-Royce Phantom II, InteriorInstead of the extremely dry Egytian climate this car for more than 16 years has enjoyed the advantages of a perfectly air-conditioned garage in Germany. During this period the Phantom II has been subject to quite some work because the present owner is a discerning collector and no less demanding than the original purchaser had been. All those weak points almost obligatory on elder Rolls-Royce Phantom II have been dealt with. The Phantom II's light alloy cylinder head is prone to electrolytic corrosion (because the cylinder blocks - 2 with 3 cylinders each - are cast iron) - and consequently repairs to the old head were not even considered but a completely new cylinder head fitted. Similarly to commission a new radiator core was preferred to any repair on the old one. Only recently the carburettor has been overhauled by a top-expert in the United Kingdom, and the induction system was renewed too. For better handling power assisted steering had been fitted.

Rolls-Royce Phantom II, Hooper Sidelight Cabriolet


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