1934 Bentley 3 1/2 Litre Drophead Coupe by James Young




Year :  1934
Make :  Bentley
Model :  3 1/2 Litre
Coachbuilder :  James Young
Body Type :  Drophead Coupe
Colour :  Cream and Beige
Trim :  Beige Leather
History :  During the late 1920’s and early 1930’s Bentley ran into grave financial trouble and by 1931 Rolls-Royce had stepped in and bought the assets and goodwill of the defunct company and formed a new one, Bentley Motors (1931) Ltd. Rolls-Royce had considered the Bentley marque to be a growing threat to their future success, but following their purchase decided to continue the Bentley name, albeit under their own stewardship, taking the company in an entirely new direction with the creation of the “Silent Sports Car” or Derby Bentley. In 1933 the new Bentley 3 ½ Litre model was released and was an instant success. The combination of effortless power and style met with almost universal praise. It was powered by a developed twin carburettor version of Rolls-Royces own 20/25 model and was installed in a low 126 inch wheelbase chassis that basically remained unaltered until the cessation of production in 1939 due to the outbreak of hostilities. Synchromesh was present on third and fourth gears and the Derby’s were fitted with a cross flow cylinder head and superb servo assisted brakes, encapsulating all of the perfection of Rolls-Royce engineering in this small sporting Bentley. Chassis number B193AE was completed in May of 1934 and supplied to its first owner, Sir Cecil Cochrane of Cumberland Place in west London. Just thirty five 3 ½ Litre chassis were bodied by James Young, with nine chassis receiving drophead coupe bodies with sweep panel style coachwork. Chassis No B193AE was the first of the nine cars completed in this style. This style of coachwork is so called because of the elliptical sweep panel across the door and part of the rear quarter, a style also used by the likes of Barker and Gurney Nutting. This allowed considerable scope for a two tone colour finish, adding further interest to an already attractive design. Chassis No B193AE changed hands for the first time in 1936 when purchased by Commander H Haynes of Greenwich in London who kept the car throughout the war years, parting with it in 1948 when sold to Sir William Twysden of Davies Street in west London. It was sold again in 1950, to Mr L N Clark of Molesey in Surrey and subsequently again in 1954 to Lt Col H Roteman of Regents Street in the heart of London. In 1958 it was purchased by Mrs J. C Ellis who resided at Cheyne Walk in London SW10 which is where it was first encountered by Frank Dale & Stepsons. Ivor Gordon, the now chairman of the company, remembers seeing the car parked in Cheyne Walk on numerous occasions on his way to work when the business was situated in Sloane Square in Chelsea, slipping several business cards underneath the wiper arms over a number of years, but his efforts were to no avail. Mr Ellis apparently used the car on a daily basis during the Ellis family ownership, motoring all over London to various appointments and then to Italy every summer for the family holiday. During the Ellis family ownership the car was featured in the movie Rebecca. The car was eventually sold by the Ellis family at auction in the late 1980’s, purchased by Ricardo Mazzucelli who was married to Ivana Trump. The car was purchased as a wedding present to his wife, but she disliked the car and ordered him to dispose of it. Mr Mazzucelli made and enquiry with us and the car was purchased by Frank Dale & Stepsons for the first time at this point. Shortly after, we supplied the car to a collection in France, delivered in person by James Crickmay, driven from London to Villeneuve which was a most enjoyable trip. Whilst in France it was shown at the Louis Vuitton Concours d’Elegance in Paris on more than one occasion. The car returned to London in 2005 and was supplied in April of that year by Frank Dale & Stepson, this time to a collector in West Sussex where it remained until very recently, when purchased by ourselves once again. Over the past seven years the car has been maintained and improved as and when necessary by a noted Rolls-Royce and Bentley specialist, with expenditure totalling in excess of £20,000, details of the works are available upon request. The car has subsequently been checked, tested and serviced in our workshops to ensure correct performance and reliability. Chassis No B193AE is a very attractive car well known to us for many decades and is one that we are very pleased to be able to offer for sale again at this time.
Condition :  Very good condition.
Technical Data :  Four speed manual gearbox, 6 cylinder in-line engine, 3.5 litres displacement, 3669cc capacity. Servo-assisted brakes.
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  • Doors: 2
  • Body type: Convertible
  • Transmission type: Manual
  • Fuel type: Petrol
  • Colour: Multi

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Frank Dale & Stepsons

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