In the early 1960’s, BMC spent some time talking to Rolls-Royce, in general terms, about merging some of their mutual interests. The only concrete result was that Rolls-Royce developed a special version of their six-cylinder 3,909cc engine for BMC to power their much revised Princess saloon. The new car was the 4-Litre Princess R, and rumours persisted that the R was meant to stand for Royal.
Automatic transmission was standard, the suspension benefitted from a massive new front cross-member, and there was even more attention to sound-deadening. The body shell was changed in many ways; there was a new roof panel offering more headroom, no peaks over the front and rear windows, a more upright rear window and the rear end was smoothed out by eliminating the fins and providing horizontal tail-lamp clusters. Perhaps the most important change however was to the price – which was £1,994, compared with £1,474 for the 3-Litre in the UK market. By 1967, production was down to 200 cars a year resulting in the Princess R being quietly withdrawn from production at the beginning of 1968 after just 6,555 cars were built.
This Vanden Plas Princess R was first registered on the 2nd October 1967 and supplied new in Ministry Black livery with Gold coachlines and was fitted with rear seat belts from new. There is an accompanying service history and the odometer reads a staggeringly low 8,500 miles which is believed genuine. The subject of many articles and supplied with a good history file and new MOT, SMT 594F is a superb piece of motoring and political history.