Absolutely STUNNINGLY BEAUTIFUL 1929 Rolls Phantom II Imperial Cabriolet ( Town car / Sedanca ) Recent professional frame-off restoration including engine rebuild by famous marque specialist Brian Joseph. In remarkbly great condition.
more info as I have taken it out of the auction brochure when I bought her :
Specifications: 120bhp 7,668 cc, inline six-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission, front and rear semi-elliptic leaf springs and power assisted four-wheel drum brakes. Wheelbase: 150"
In September 1929, Rolls-Royce made the announcement that the Phantom I chassis would be discontinued. Following Sir Henry Royce’s staunch belief in evolution not revolution, the company decided it was time to replace the Phantom I with a more refined, updated chassis.
Rolls-Royce debuted this new chassis – known today as the Phantom II – the following month at the Olympia Motor Show. Improvements included the use of both semi-elliptic springs for both front and rear axles. Of particular note was the PII’s rear springs, which were underslung. A considerable reduction in ride height was the result of the new rear spring layout. When combined with the PII’s new lower frame, the total reduction was on the order of nine inches.
Phantom II production spanned a relatively brief period of time, only six years between 1929 and 1935; in all, approximately 1,767 examples of the Phantom II were produced. With the customer’s choice of coachwork from one of Europe’s leading firms, each individual Phantom II was highly distinctive and often tailor-made to the buyer.
The Rolls-Royce Phantom II presented here was specially ordered by Robert T. Neely of New York, the founder of Nedick’s and Shanty Shops, a chain of 135 luncheonettes popular till the 1950s. At the time the Rolls-Royce was built, Mr. Neely’s net worth was nearly 10 million dollars. A testament to his wealth and appreciation of fine things, he built his summer home at Sands Point, next door to none other than Mr. William Randolph Hearst. It was indeed fitting that no expense was spared when building this beautifully coachbuilt Rolls-Royce.
Notably, the Rolls-Royce ordered by Mr. Neely, XJ-127, was one of the very first examples in the premier year of production of the Phantom II model, and was shipped to Paris to receive coachwork by Hibbard and Darrin. Despite being completely aluminum, the body was quite heavy, and extra supports were added to the frame to accommodate the added weight spanning the 12 1/2 ft wheelbase.
The interior compartment, one of the car’s most unique aspects, is lavishly appointed and surrounds its occupants with opulent decadence. As expected, a divider window separates the passengers from the chauffeur, while a speaker system allows them to communicate with him at will. Not one for modesty, the rear compartment is trimmed with German plated gold hardware, and features a faux mink floor cover, a crystal decanter and glasses, the original perfume bottles and lighter, as well as jump seats and window blinds.
Throughout the interior of the Rolls-Royce, one will find the Rose and Lily etchings duplicating Mr. Neely’s family crest, a lovely detail further enhancing its individuality. With security always an issue for the wealthy, there is even a hidden gun case built in the armrest of Mr. Neely’s side of the car. Other high-end interior appointments include walnut wood throughout and a Waltham eight-day clock. The leather-padded roof over the chauffeur’s compartment is completely removable for open air driving. The current owner reports that when first built, this magnificent example was toured from Paris throughout Europe for approximately 100 days, before being shipped to the United States aboard the “America Flyer”.
Externally, the standout feature of this car is undoubtedly its exceptionally long, polished aluminum bonnet and cowl, the design of which was executed with the intention of creating a beautifully pronounced and flowing appearance. Notably, the employment of the raked windshield, extended bonnet, cowl section and long sweeping fenders – devoid of spare tires – is also duplicated on such prized Rolls-Royce models as the rare Henley Roadsters, as well as numerous other fully coachbuilt and significant models. The dramatic lines of the automobile continue thoughtfully, and meet the dark midnight blue bodywork of the car with purposeful elegance. One of the first Phantom II models to display these features, it is further enhanced at the front of the car by the nickel-plated radiator and Marchal headlamps, finished at the rear with an unobtrusive, single-mount spare tire.
In November 1962, at the age of 80, Robert T. Neely passed away and the car was sent to the Finelli Museum in Ohio. The previous owner acquired the Phantom II from the museum in 1999 and treated it to a proper restoration both cosmetically and mechanically. Marque expert Brian Joseph of Detroit performed all the engine work, which included a complete engine rebuild. The engine was also precision balanced and treated to all new wiring. The car received a thorough mechanical service, and we understand it is mechanically fit to participate in RROC tours and events around the globe.
This Phantom II, with its polished aluminum bonnet, elegant coachwork and beautifully presented interior, will certainly appeal to those with a predilection for the most opulent and beautiful examples of the period , and she's priced to sell way below the cost of the restoration.
Please note the US coachbuilders name Schutte appears on the buildsheet as well , so it could be Schutte updated the coachwork. However , according to records , Schutte coach co. seized to exist around 1931.