1936 ROLLS-ROYCE PHANTOM III SEDANCA DE VILLE
COACHWORK BY BARKER & CO. COACHBUILDERS. No. 7098
Registration No. Tba
Chassis No. 3 AZ 24
Engine No. A 64 A
Taupe over cream, with cream and tan interior
Engine: V12, overhead valve, 7,388cc; Gearbox: four-speed manual; Suspension: front, independent with enclosed coil springs, rear, semi-elliptic leaf spring; Brakes: servo-assisted four wheel drum. Right hand drive.
This Rolls-Royce was built in the very first batch of Phantom IIIs, and retains its original well-proportioned Barker Sedanca de Ville coachwork. Its beautifully styled lines are accentuated by the two tone livery, and an Art Deco theme is evident throughout the car. Features in keeping with its period of design range from the unusual Barker flat handles for doors, window winders and division, to the painted dashboard with simple instrument cluster. The theme is most evident in the rear, passenger, compartment where all the main features of picnic tables, folding companions, radio (now missing) and speaker disappear to leave an uncluttered division fascia in walnut. For discreet travelling, blinds are fitted to all rear windows and division.
The external appearance is completed by a full complement of Lucas headlights, long trumpet horns and a Notek centre driving light. The necessity of a spare wheel carrier and wheel are limited to just one running board, leaving the lines of passenger side of the car unbroken, similarly although there is the provision of a fold down luggage tray in front of the rear storage compartment, this also fits flush to the coachwork.
The original order, copies of which come with the car, suggests that it was used by Barker for demonstration work and trials. This is not surprising as the coachbuilder would certainly have wished to promote their latest designs on the all new Phantom chassis, and as is often the case with demonstration cars this may account for the high level of interior detail. Eighteen months after it was delivered to Barker, it was sold to Jack Barclay in May 1938, and then supplied to its first private customer, being Ernest Thornton-Smith, with whom it was registered DGH 2. The last record of the car in England was in 1938.
Until the late 1990s it is known that the Phantom resided in Sweden, and it was there that a full restoration was commissioned. Although this was clearly some years ago, the Phantom must have been consistently well-maintained as the paintwork and interior are still difficult to fault. However it seems likely that it had seen limited use in latter years, and as a result of this when the present owner acquired the car shortly after it had been repatriated, sympathetic work was required to ensure that it was usable and reliable.
This has been completed entirely successfully, and included complete rewiring using modern wire with correct period colour braiding, fitting of a new exhaust, and renewal of the dash which had become brittle. In subsequent use, the vendor reports that the Phantom III has never suffered from the normal limitation of overheating, but for safety purposes has benefitted from a re-cored radiator, re-conditioned water pump and refurbished temperature gauge. With a current MoT and road fund licence, the car is ready for use.
A handsome Sedanca de Ville, which is now as it was when new - the epitome of style, refinement and performance.