Bentley 8-Litre Tourer 1931 – SPRZEDANY

Zaprezentowany na londyńskim Salonie Samochodowym w 1930 roku Bentley 8-Litre odniósł natychmiastowy sukces. Stworzony był aby zdetronizować Rolls-Royce’a Phantoma, w oparciu o powiększony silnik 6,5 l Speed Six, który napędzał Bentleye do wielu zwycięstw wyścigowych. Kiedy Phantom miał problemy z osiągnięciem prędkości 90 km/h, Bentley bez problemów i na długim dystansie potrafił jechać ponad 100 km/h. Zaimponował także dziennikarzom tamtej epoki, a Sfera z 1931 r. opisała nowy 8-litrowy pojazd jako „jeden z najlepszych przykładów brytyjskiej inżynierii samochodowej, jaki kiedykolwiek wyprodukowano”. Wśród 100 zbudowanych sztuk prezentowany egzemplarz YR5094 był 11-tym od końca. W nadwoziu limuzyny karosowanej przez firmę Thrupp i Maberly, wyeksportowany został do Singapuru, gdzie zyskał przydomek „limuzyny haremu”, a powodu damskiego towarzystwa, jakim otaczał się w nim właściciel. Drugą wojnę samochód przetrwał schowany w kopalni, by powrócić do Wielkiej Brytanii w 1950 roku. Otrzymał wówczas skrócone, wyścigowe nadwozie i rozpoczął karierę sportową. Tego typu modyfikacje popularne były od lat 30-tych, kiedy właściciele zapragnęli poczuć radość z prowadzenia tych maszyn i zaczęli przesuwać się z tylnego siedzenia na przód. Prezentowany Bentley 8-Litre Tourer obecne nadwozie – czteromiejscowy, dwudrzwiowy tourer w stylu Vanden Plas – otrzymał na początku lat dwutysięcznych, podczas kompleksowej renowacji wykonanej przez specjalistów z Vintage Workshop. Podobnie jak cała kolekcja pana Saraggi, również i on licytowany był bez ceny minimalnej. Uzyskano 680 tysięcy euro (blisko 3 miliony złotych).

Link: https://rmsothebys.com/en/auctions/pg19/the-s%C3%A1ragga-collection/lots/r0013-1931-bentley-8-litre-tourer/775112

Tom Gidden ©2019 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Lot Number 164
1931 Bentley 8-Litre Tourer
€700,000 – €800,000
Offered without reserve
Sold For €680,000
Inclusive of applicable buyer’s fee.

RM | Sotheby’s – THE SÁRAGGA COLLECTION 20 – 21 SEPTEMBER 2019 – Offered on Saturday
Chassis No. YR5094
Engine No. YR5094
Documents: Cancelled UK V5C

Documented, original build records and known history from new
Handwritten factory workshop records from the 1930s
Detailed photos and notes from restoration by marque specialist in the 2000s
Documented by Bentley historian Clare Hay in Bentley: The Vintage Years

Introduced at the London Motor Show in 1930, the Bentley 8-Litre made an immediate impact. While the engine was an extension of the successful 6.5-litre Speed Six that powered Bentleys to numerous race victories, the 8-Litre was intended to knock Rolls-Royce from its pedestal. Capable of 100+ mph fitted with heavy formal coachwork, the Phantom had difficulty attaining 90 mph. It also impressed the automotive scribes of the era, with the Sphere of 1931 describing the new 8-Litre as ‘one of the finest examples of British automobile engineering that has ever been produced’.

Regardless of expense and engineered to the highest standards, no detail was overlooked. For example, the exhaust pipe was asbestos-lagged, encased in aluminium to reduce resonance, then coupled with a 20-gallon silencer. The resulting exhaust note is bliss to the Bentley faithful. The starter was designed to engage with surgical precision via a unique solenoid design, meshing with the flywheel before rotation begins.

Of the 100 8-Litre Bentleys built, YR5094 is the eleventh-to-last constructed. It was first delivered May 1931, wearing Thrupp and Maberly limousine coachwork, to Eu Tong Sen in Singapore, who often was accompanied by his lady friends—lending the car the moniker of ‘the harem saloon’. During WWII it was safely stored in a mine, before returning to the UK around 1950, where Peter Quinn, the next owner, removed the original body. Its next owner was Peter Morley, who shortened the chassis to a 30-inch wheelbase and fitted a stylish two-seater body suited to the vintage racing events he participated in.

The next owner, Mr Posnett, dismantled the car and returned the chassis to its original length of 12 feet. Still dismantled, it was purchased by John Cobbing in 2002, who had it restored by Bentley specialists the Vintage Workshop. The engine was completely rebuilt, including the one-shot lubrication system, clutch, carburetors, Auto-Vac, exhaust system, radiator, gearbox, 3.2:1 differential, suspension, and steering. Everything was either replaced, restored, or inspected and re-fitted to as close to as-new condition as possible.

It was then re-bodied as a Vanden Plas–style four-seater, two-door tourer. The fresh Midnight Blue paint finish enhances its lines, especially those iconic Gurney-Nutting–style helmet wings, and an era-correct original Lagonda luggage trunk was fitted over the gas tank. The interior was impeccably retrimmed using grey hides. The polished walnut instrument panel is complete with authentic black beveled speedometer, tachometer, voltage amp meter, Bosch ignition switch, ARIC oil pressure gauge, and correct switch for battery, battery/magneto, and magneto selections.

Few pre-war marques experienced as many coachwork and engine swaps as the W. O. Bentley cars, but YR5094 hides no secrets, as documented by its accompanying history file. Most 8-Litre Bentleys, like this example, were originally fitted with formal closed bodies that were eventually replaced with more sporting open tourers. The practice of replacing saloon and limousine bodies started in the 1930s, when owners began to move from the back seat to the front.

Noted motor car enthusiast David E Davis Jr was quoted in Forbes, 1991, as saying, ‘What is the highest tribute one can pay a noble, inspired million-dollar classic automobile? Simple, old boy, drive the bloody thing.’

With its exceptional provenance, wonderful condition, and rare production, this 8-Litre open tourer represents Bentley’s most masterful creations. As 2019 is the 100th Jubilee Anniversary of Bentley Motors, it is certain to be welcomed to all celebrations of the marque.