|Model :||S2 Continental|
|Coachbuilder :||Park Ward|
|Body Type :||Drophead Coupe|
|Colour :||Tudor Grey|
|Trim :||Red Leather|
|Technical Data :||Four speed automatic gearbox, power steering, 8 cylinder 90 degree V-configuration engine, 6.2 litres displacement, 6230cc capacity. Drum brakes servo-assisted.|
The S1 Continental engine had effectively run its course by 1959 and could not be developed any further. The approximate 160bhp power output was more than sufficient but due to pressures and competition elsewhere Rolls-Royce sought out an improved power unit to deliver more speed whilst retaining the Bentley Continentals refined performance. The answer was a complete move away from the six cylinder inline engine configuration, to an all new V8 engine boasting 6,230cc and an estimated 200bhp boosting the power by nearly 25%. It had been developed at Crewe for some years prior to being fitted to the first S2 Continental chassis at the Hooper works in December of 1959 and was an immediate success. It was constructed almost entirely in aluminium and was of a very similar weight to the S1 Continentals engine, but featured hydraulic tappets to ensure quiet running. A few other mechanical aspects were modified including the braking and lubrication systems, with automatic transmission now a standard fitting, making the Bentley S2 Continental a motor car capable of speeds approaching 120mph. Acquired in 1960 by Rolls-Royce, coachbuilders H.J. Mulliner had largely been entrusted with the creation of the closed body styles on the Continental chassis. Rolls-Royce turned to the experts at Park Ward, who had been owned by Rolls-Royce since before the war, to provide the styling and construction of the future open variants in the Bentley Continental range. Whilst at the Turin Motor Show, some of the Rolls-Royce hierarchy had been impressed with the styling of an Alfa Romeo coupe created by a Norwegian designer named Vilhelm Koren. They were so impressed that the Norwegian freelance designer was brought in to the Crewe styling office and asked to design the new Park Ward drophead coupe body to be fitted to the S2 Continental chassis. The result was quite a departure from the previously familiar lines of the Bentley Continentals of the past, with an all new straight wingline, rear fins and new styled headlamps. Steel was also used in the construction of the body, with it being used to create the floor pan, sills, rear wings and scuttle. The final product proved to be very successful and sold well much to the delight of the vindicated design team at Crewe. It should be noted that a fixed head coupe was also designed by Koren for the S2 Continental chassis, but was never produced. Chassis No BC115CZ is one of just sixty cars built to Design No 991 by Park Ward on the S2 Continental chassis. It was originally completed in April of 1962 in Tudor grey with a red leather interior. It was supplied by Weybridge Automobiles to its first owner, Mr V.H.Cousins of Pinner in Middlesex. The car was purchased by Mr Cousins with the intent of use on Continental tours with his wife. Unfortunately he died only a few years after the car was purchased however his widow decided to keep the car, using it only for special occasions and family weddings. The mileage was noted in 1972 at just 16,000 miles and when the car was finally sold by Mrs Cousins in 1989 the total mileage was just 20,000 miles from new. Mr Guy Shoesmith of Andover in Kent became the second owner in 1989 and used the car on the Continent before passing the car to his daughter Anne, who sold the car through P&A Wood in 1996 at 25,750 miles from new. It was purchased by Mr Tothill of Great Chesterfield in Essex who kept the car for around twelve months when it was sold to Mr D Guidvaey of London. The car was and has been maintained by P.J Fischer and P&A Wood over the past twenty years and In more recent times Chassis No B115CZ became part of a high class collection of motor cars in East Sussex. It is in beautiful original condition in every respect, has travelled only 50,600 miles from new and is complete with an extensive history file, all of its original tools and even its original handbooks, still in perfect condition and in their original envelope from Park Ward, stamped with the chassis number. It is fitted with seat belts, power windows and air conditioning which was tastefully installed by P.J.Fischer. It is in our opinion the most original, low mileage example still in excellent condition available today. A true time warp that needs to be seen in person to be properly appreciated.
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