1930 Rolls-Royce 40/50hp Phantom II Rolling Chassis Project Registration no. GJ 5518 Chassis no. 141XJ Engine no. HZ55
The Phantom II was introduced in 1929 as a successor to the New Phantom (retrospectively known as the Phantom I) with deliveries commencing in September of that year. Unlike its predecessor, which inherited its underpinnings from the preceding 40/50hp model, the Silver Ghost, the Phantom II employed an entirely new chassis laid out along the lines of that of the smaller 20hp Rolls-Royce. Built in two wheelbase lengths - 144" and 150" - this new low-slung frame, with its radiator set well back, enabled coachbuilders to body the car in the modern idiom, creating sleeker designs than the upright ones of the past.
The engine too had come in for extensive revision. The PI's cylinder dimensions and basic layout - two blocks of three cylinders, with an aluminium cylinder head common to both blocks - were retained, but the combustion chambers had been redesigned and the 'head was now of the cross-flow type, with inlet and exhaust manifolds on opposite sides. The magneto/coil dual ignition system remained the same as on the PI. The result of these engine changes was greatly enhanced performance, particularly of the Continental model, and the ability to accommodate weightier coachwork.
Highly favoured by prominent coachbuilders, the Phantom II chassis provided the platform for some of the truly outstanding designs of its day, and this example was originally bodied by Carlton as a saloon. Erected on the long chassis, it was ordered by one E Thornton Smith of Soho Square, London W2 and delivered to him on 5th June 1930. Copy chassis cards on file list two further owners, the second of whom, A A Titmuss & Co Ltd of London SW9, acquired the Rolls-Royce in March 1945.
The Phantom has been in the current ownership since 1966 and was garage stored until 2004, since when it has been stored outside under cover, and was probably last started during the 1980s. Offered for restoration and sold strictly as viewed, it would, once fitted with a lightweight aluminium tourer body, afford the fortunate new owner with a truly thrilling motoring experience. The car is offered with an old-style logbook and V5 registration document.