To Be OFFERED AT AUCTION at RM Sothebys' Arizona event, 22 January 2021. Estimate: $225,000 - $350,000
One of only two two-door Saloon Coupes built on Phantom V chassis
Handsome older restoration in appropriate colors
Accompanied by Rolls-Royce Foundation documentation
A car of marvelous proportions; the ultimate statement!
Not every owner of a Rolls-Royce Phantom V was conservatively minded, and for them, coachbuilder James Young offered the Saloon Coupe—the vintage equivalent of a Phantom Drophead, capable of stopping all poseurs in their tracks. Essentially a two-door limousine, the car was built on the same platform as other Phantom Vs, with the talent of James Young’s designers creating a beautiful, well-proportioned two-door body that recalls the fixed head or stationary coupes of the Classic Era.
Only two examples of the lush Saloon Coupe were produced, both for American clients. While both were very similar visually, each was built to a different design, numbers PV55 and PV55S, respectively. The latter, erected on chassis number 5LBX76, featured a true coupe-style interior with near equal legroom to both front and rear compartments, for “owner-driver” use, and had a slightly different shape to its roofline. The interior was outfitted with “cubbies” to both doors; electric windows; air conditioning; a Smiths Radiomobile radio; and storage areas, a footrest, and adjustable reading lights for the rear seat passengers. Originally the body was finished in Alpine White over House of Lords Red leather upholstery—a striking combination.
5LBX76 was delivered in February 1962 to Carlton W. Smith, retired president of the American Envelope Company of West Carrollton, Ohio, and a highly prominent philanthropist in the Dayton area. Later owners included John McComb of Granville, Ohio, and the noted early enthusiast Ernest Stern of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania before the car was purchased by the current owner, in whose collection it has resided alongside several other significant postwar coachbuilt Phantoms for many years.
Restored some time ago in the present subtle hues of Sand over Garnet, the car is largely well-preserved except for two paint chips and a scuff to the right-hand door. The interior is largely unmarked and very attractive, with rich woodwork and the vast leather seats one would expect in a Phantom V, facing a well-appointed dashboard. Cigarette lighters are missing from the interior, while the trunk contains a correct jack and partial set of road tools. Accompanying documentation includes copies of Rolls-Royce Foundation build and ownership documentation, as well as the original guarantee card for the radio in Mr. Smith’s name.
Surely one of the largest, most visually impressive coupes ever built by any manufacturer, the Carlton W. Smith Saloon Coupe is in the first rank of modern coachbuilt Rolls-Royces. It demands attention!To view this car and others currently consigned to this auction, please visit the RM website at rmsothebys.com/en/auctions/az21.