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1965 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III

Superbly Documented Longtime California Car. Fastidiously Maintained and Structurally Excellent.

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Exterior Color Sand and Garnet
Interior Color Beige Leather
Mileage 122702 Miles
Engine 6.2 liter V8
Transmission 4-speed automatic
Status Sold
Stock FJ2178


1965 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III
s/n SJR319
Garnet over Sand with Beige Leather Interior

The Silver Cloud and its Bentley S series sibling arrived in 1955, replacing the Silver Dawn and R-Type models, both of which had served Rolls-Royce’s postwar brand expansion well, particularly in US and European markets. The final body-on-frame construction Rolls-Royce to be built, the Silver Cloud, would be the final series production car to be available with coach-built bodies supplied by prestigious coachbuilders. Initially powered by a six-cylinder engine carried over from earlier models, Silver Cloud gained an all-new 6.2 litre aluminum alloy V8 in 1959 with the introduction of the Silver Cloud II. Power steering and power brakes were standard, as was a four-speed automatic transmission. In the final three years of production (1963-1965), the Silver Cloud III would receive an updated front end, larger SU carburetors, higher compression ratio, strengthened internal engine components, and reduced weight. Just 2,044 Silver Cloud III models were produced.

This particular car is a right hand drive example that has been in the care of two long-term California automotive enthusiast/owners since 1977. Per the 21 pages of included build sheets, the car was supplied new to by Mann Egerton in Norwich, UK to an attorney J. W. Barron, Esq. of Great Yarmoth on 23 March 1965. The build sheets indicate that the car remains in its original color combination of Garnet over Sand with Beige leather interior, and indicates that the hubcaps were originally finished in sand with garnet coachline, which was faithfully reproduced when the car was repainted in 2013. The build sheets also list the original options as electric windows, Avon tubeless tires, combined parking and blinking lights on the B-pillars, and Radiomobile 920T radio, all of which the car retains except for the tires.

By 1977, the car had found its way to San Francisco, California where it was sold on 23 October 1977 at British Motor Cars, the dealer which still exists today on Van Ness Avenue between O’Farrell and Ellis streets. The car was purchased by a couple living in Piedmont, California who were very enthusiastic about cars. Around the same time, they purchased a Bentley R-Type, and they also owned a pair of Turbo Rs in later years, as well as a Porsche 356 and 928. A photo taken in front of the dealer on the day the car was sold shows the salesman wearing a three-piece grey suit and sporting a fabulously 1970s Afro hairstyle. In the photo, the car is wearing the six-digit blue plates with BMC license plate frames which survived with the car, registration number 444 SUR. Two other old photos of the car depict it somewhere in the Northern California wine country in November of 1982, and again in 1990 together with the owners’ R-Type and two people: one of the owners and a boy who lived nearby and had become friends with the couple, a car enthusiast drawn in by their continuous stream of interesting cars.

When the owners of the car passed away in 2011, they generously bequeathed the car to that boy, who was by then in his mid 30s and had a serious car habit of his own. He has looked after the car with an exceptional level of fastidiousness, as demonstrated by the ample service records which date as far back as the late 1970s but show particularly attentive care during his ownership. During this period, the car has been looked after with an open checkbook, including rechroming the bumpers and stripping the car to bare metal, repairing all rust, and repainting the car in its entirety at a cost of over $20,000 in 2013. The interior was redyed in 2016, and the door caps and waist rails refinished by Madera Concepts.

In addition to the cosmetic work performed on the car, many thousands of dollars in mechanical services and repairs in recent years are documented in itemized records including just a few listed here: $8300 in brake service and routine maintenance in 2008, October 2011 transmission service, new power steering hoses, new steering box mounts, and new motor mounts ($2700). In April and May 2012 the car received a new generator, master cylinder, resealed timing cover, new radiator hoses, a new steam valve, and differential fluid. In January and later July 2013 new shock bushings were installed, upper and lower heater cores replaced, and the heater motor actuator was rebuilt ($6,000.00). 2017 service included new fuel lines, new points, new oil pressure sender, power steering service (fluid and filter), new fuel pump, new spark plugs, recored radiator, and resealed power steering ram. The oil was changed and new master cylinders fitted in January of 2018.

Now showing 122,700 believed to be original miles, the car runs and operates well. The majority of the mechanical work has been performed by the Rolls-Royce/Bentley specialist Acme Car Service, located in Hayward, California. The nature of the records demonstrates how particular the owner of this car has been: no detail has been too small to address, whether it’s the function of the trunk light or the automatic cold idle mechanism. The copious file of records also includes build sheets, wiring diagram, owner’s manual, and original keys as well as the original Rolls-Royce key fob. The original tool set is mostly complete and still present in the trunk.

The car is cosmetically very nice with a handsome presentation overall. The two tone color combination is among the nicest of these classic series cars with elegant chrome trim and very nice cosmetic details throughout the exterior. The attractive garnet over sand paint enhances the bodylines, lightening the spacious interior and elegant glass. The paint remains very glossy with two minor areas having been chipped and touched up along the rocker area and headlight surround. The chrome is very nice throughout, appearing basically as new on the bumpers since they were refinished in 2013. The remaining chrome is older but in good shape, with some minor pitting and haze. The glass, lighting, and Lucas lenses are in very good to excellent condition with some crazing and a hairline cracking on the right rear turn signal lens. The overall feel of the car is cohesive and honest, capturing the essence elegant driving without the fussiness of an overly restored car.

The interior is a nice combination of high quality original materials and restored components as needed. The wood, leather, and carpeting are all nicely presented. The seats have been preserved and remain quite nice with the exception of the driver’s seat bottom, which is showing signs of wear, though still very serviceable. The door caps and waistrails were beautifully restored and have a very glossy finish while the remaining wood is unrestored and in good original condition. The sill panels and door jambs are very clean and well presented as are the carpeted door sashes.

The engine compartment is tidy and properly maintained showing correct finishes to the engine and intake components, proper hardware and attention to detail. Though not highly detailed, the engine and accessory components are clean and correct. The trunk is clean, honest and unrestored, sporting correct material liners, including the tool kit, tools, and jack properly stored under the carpet. Though not detailed, the clean and dry chassis of the car is solid, shows no evidence of structural compromise, and retains factory original aluminum engine guards, too often discarded by unknowledgeable mechanics. Two areas of the chassis were professionally repaired to high standards due to corrosion but the chassis is otherwise original.

The car starts easily cold or warm settling into a smooth and quiet idle. The cold start fast idle mechanism works properly, settling down to the normal idle speed upon the driver’s command when the accelerator pedal is prodded and then released. The column selector slides easily into drive, activating the automatic transmission. Acceleration is smooth and quiet, as the car glides through modern traffic easily and comes to smooth stops without worry. Highway driving is composed and civilized keeping up with modern cars, while maintaining surprisingly even tracking and smooth cornering despite the car’s expansive presence. The car will cruise happily at 80mph plus. Sitting high in the car, the open glass and tall position gives the driver a resplendent view of the soaring hood line and captivating Spirit of Ecstasy hood ornament. Driving a Rolls Royce reminds even the most jaded of automotive enthusiasts of the heritage and pride afforded by commanding one of the most luxurious automobiles ever built. Substantial service records dating back to the 1970s, an original owner’s manual, two sets of keys, and period photographs accompany this wonderful car.

This handsome Silver Cloud III is an exceptionally nice car. Fastidiously owned by a caretaker who insisted on the best without regard to cost, this example is far nicer than these cars typically are. With over forty years of California history, the car is structurally excellent and has a fabulous story. It is mechanically and cosmetically sorted and is complete with records, manual, original keys, and period photographs.


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Fantasy Junction +1 510 653 7555 Emeryville, California 94608 USA

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