Rolls-Royce

1977 Rolls-Royce Corniche Drop Head Coupe

Location: United Kingdom

Simply gorgeous and very unusual too, the Corniche was simply the "top of the pops" in 1976 being the most ostentatious drop head available anywhere

Driven by Hollywood moguls, film stars, the very rich and the very famous too they were completely hand made at the London, Mulliner Park Ward factory to special order only and therefore were exceedingly expensive

The delightful version on offer here is from the highly sought after mid series version (often referred to as the 1a) which has most of the series II modifications whilst still retaining the earlier bodywork with chrome bumpers

The most significant of these was the introduction of the bi-level climate control, a brilliant system that stayed in production until 2003, plus a fully redesigned fascia, seats, suspension and a twin exhaust system too

Having spent most of its' life on the sunny island of Jersey and like many of the luxury vehicles registered there, mileage was nominal and in fact still stands now at just 19.750

The original owner (incidentally, the same chap whose 900 mile Camargue we previously sold) purchased the Corniche from St Helier Garage, Official Rolls-Royce and Bentley dealers, who had come by the car as an "extra to quota" vehicle

Correspondence validates how lucky the factory considered them to have been, being given this special extra unit to sell at a time when these cars were on back order for a matter of years

The first owner, who incidentally kept her, like the Camargue, until his passing in 2011, bought her as a valentines gift for his wife - nice touch and must have been awarded an abundance of "brownie points"

The underside, engine bay and interior are all remarkable, immaculate and original, although the history folder is somewhat scant it can be sensed from the overall condition and driving experience that this motor car has hardy ever been used

Indeed speaking with the second owners, again from the Channel Isles, they bought the Corniche directly from the lady who had been given the car as a Valentines gift, and the service manager from St Helier Garage (retired now) validated all of the above when I called him when we previously owned the car

The second owners undertook a light restoration upon purchase point with new blue paint (originally Nutmeg), modern stereo and reversing sensors and only sold it to fund another Bentley project they had on the go

At this point, 2012 and still with only 6500 miles, she came here to the mainland and passed into the hands of her third owner, a French man living here in London who had a large collection of Rolls-Royce and Bentley motor cars

He obviously loved her original and tight feeling for he used her regularly taking the mileage to 9.500 at which point we purchased her and immediately sold her to the fourth owner who kept her as his family outing car for the next 7 years

He has a huge passion for motorcars with anything you could consider having been in his garage at some point - including some of the most Ferrari's such as 250GT California Spyder and a Ferrari 250GTO, so obviously maintenance has been carried out at all times, and whatever was needed was indeed carried out by our chum Michael Hibberd, including new front brake discs, accumulator spheres, new Avon whitewall tyres as well as the usual routine service items

Almost £60.000 has been lavished upon her in the last couple of years for this is one of the best versions we have ever owned

Most recent works include a new hood in the correct beige Everflex and a repaint in BMC Iris Blue at the behest of his wife as it is a very pretty colour in the sun light - to be fair she is right

Almost unrepeatable in this condition, she drive's just like a three year old car coming out of Jack Barclay's showrooms as we can validate, as we used her on the RAC Scottish Tour earlier this year - see last couple of pictures - where she performed faultlessly on the 980 mile round trip over 4 days, top down for the last three days too!!

Very rare in period, as mentioned above, and rarer still today this superb Corniche is a real treat and comes highly recommended

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