The manually geared, 1953 RHD Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith on offer at Classic Park has coachwork by Hooper & Co.
Presented in 1946, the Silver Wraith was Roll-Royce’s first post-war automobile. Just like its predecessors Rolls-Royce only made the chassis and the engine. The body was manufactured by specialized coach builders like H.J. Mulliner, Hooper and Park Ward. The Silver Wraith was the last Rolls-Royce to be built like this.
In order to keep up with the competition the brand had to modernise. From 1952 an automatic transmission became optional and power steering was available from 1956. Even Rolls-Royce had to economise due to the shortages after WW II. Rolls-Royce started using the same parts its sister brand Bentley. The Silver Wraith’s engine is almost the same as the one in the Bentley MK VI. The initial capacity of 4257 cc was enlarged to 4566 cc in 1951 and in 1954 to 4887 cc. Top speed was 83 mph (135 km/ph).
In the press the Silver Wraith received comments like this: 'In common with all Rolls-Royce cars, the Silver Wraith has an indefinable something about it, a delicacy of behaviour, which escapes definition in written words. It is a car for the connoisseur in cars'.
Queen Juliana of the Netherlands used a Silver Wraith Limousine State Landaulette (meaning that the rear part of the roof can be folded down) as a state automobile from 1958 to 1979. Other Silver Wraith’s made guest appearances is several Bat Man movies and “The Return of the Pink Panther”.
Production of the Silver Wraith stopped in 1959 after 1,883 were built. In 1975 Rolls-Royce introduced the Silver Wraith II, a long wheelbase variety of the Silver Shadow. Up to 1980, 2,135 ones were built.
1953 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith by Hooper en Co.
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