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From the Arthur Carter Collection
1949 Riley RMC 2½-Litre Roadster
Registration no. YVL 744
Chassis no. 59SS-5380
Engine no. 5380

'... this car gives the strongest possible impression, always associated with the Riley marque, of efficient design... and honest workmanship and construction. With its high performance, its useful seating capacity and its quite exceptional luggage space, it should have an especial appeal to those... who want a car of character capable of covering big distances fast and tirelessly...' - The Autocar.

Despite producing some fine small saloons and sporting cars, and carving out an enviable competition record for itself during the early 1930s, Riley had lost its battle to remain independent by the decade's end and became part of the Nuffield Organisation. Rileys of the immediate post-war years were, nevertheless, recognisably products of the 'old firm'. Most popular of these was the 1½-litre RMA sports saloon, which came with torsion bar independent front suspension, rack-and-pinion steering, Girling hydro-mechanical brakes, four-speed synchromesh gearbox and Riley's classic twin-camshaft, overhead-valve engine in four-cylinder guise. Further up the range there was the 2½-litre RMB (identical to the 1½-litre model from the windscreen backwards) which used the pre-war Big Four's 90bhp engine in a lengthened RMA chassis. Built at Coventry and introduced in 1946, the RMB was blessed with 100bhp from 1948 (at which time production was shifted to the MG works at Abingdon) and in this form was good for a top speed of around 95mph. Three-seater RMC roadster and RMD drophead coupé versions were manufactured between 1948 and 1951 before the surviving Riley 2½-Litre saloon model was face-lifted in 1½-Litre RME fashion, becoming the RMF. A total of 507 RMCs and 502 RMDs had been completed by the time production of soft-top RMs ceased.

One of approximately 100 manufactured in right-hand drive configuration, this rare - top of the range - RMC roadster was restored in 2004/2005 by Classic Restorations of Alyth, Perthshire and appears to be in near concours condition. The restoration was carried out while the car belonged to the previous owner, Mr Keir, a resident of the Isle of Skye (just imagine how enjoyable it would be driving the roadster on this beautiful Scottish isle), who had bought it from respected dealer Malcolm Elder & Sons in September 1997.

Running and driving well on a recent road test, the Riley was acquired by Arthur Carter a few years ago to join his collection in Scotland. The RMC is highly recommended and offered with a large file of restoration photographs and invoices, an instruction book, workshop manual, old-style continuation logbook (1962), expired MoT (2005) and a V5C registration document.

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Bonhams Collectors’ Car department