Over the past eight decades the 20/25HP Rolls-Royce has earned an enviable reputation of being among the most dependable, satisfying and highest-quality pre-war models of all. Produced from 1929 to 1935, it represented the Marque’s determined effort to move away from massive formal cars, routinely chauffeur-driven, to the newly-fashionable owner-driver market for the wealthy private owner-driver.
Of course it embodied Crewe’s routine programme of continuous mechanical development and improvement throughout its run, but the fundamentals of its superbly-crafted three and a half litre straight six driving through a four speed gearbox of amazing refinement remained the same.
By the late 1920s the trend for ever-heavier coachwork on the Rolls-Royce 20 HP had inevitably had a detrimental effect on performance. Rolls-Royce’s solution was to increase the comparatively small six cylinder engine’s capacity from just over three litres to 3,699cc which, together with a stronger crankshaft allowing increased rpm, raised its output to 25hp.
As with the 20 HP, the 20/25 was warmly received and proved immensely popular, soon more than doubling sales of the big Phantom II. Various detail improvements were made to the 20/25 during its seven year production life including rises in compression ratio in 1930 and 1932; the latter year also saw the introduction of synchromesh for the third and fourth gear ratios, thermostatically controlled radiator grille shutters, a one-shot centralised lubrication system and an electric fuel gauge.
Lancefield Coachworks Ltd started motor body construction in 1921, mounting a body on a Rolls-Royce chassis first in 1926. Between then and 1939 approximately 150 bodies were built for Rolls-Royce chassis. The company ceased coach building in 1948 and then became involved in aircraft component manufacture.
This particular 1935 example, chassis GBJ 26 clothed with this wonderful Lancefield coachwork is presented here. Finished in two tone black and contrasting red paintwork to set the lines of this car off beautifully with the Dove Grey interior looking spectacular and compliments the car well. The car comes with a copy of a US Certificate of Title from Illinois, a FIVA identity card and very special copies of the original build card for this car. A lovely and rare example given that only approximately 150 of these Lancefield bodies were built on the Rolls-Royce chassis. Not to be missed.