The Salon Privé Sale 2017

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1996 Bentley Continental R

Lot No.: 207

Registration: N648 PYP
Chassis Number: SCBZB15C8TCH53164
Engine Number: 86558L410M/T1T
Number of cylinders: 8
CC: 6750
Year of Manufacture: 1996
RHD/LHD: Right Hand Drive
Estimate (£): 37,000 - 42,000
(+buyer's premium of 15% including VAT @ 20%)

In a respectful nod to the most beautiful Bentley of them all, the first Continental since 1966 used the 'R' suffix to evoke memories of the R-type. The name wasn't taken in vain, for this was also the first individually styled Bentley since the Sixties. Launched in 1991, the Bentley Continental R was a large, exclusive, luxury coupé and was the fastest, most expensive, and most powerful Bentley in period, and probably the most expensive production car in the world at launch. It was substantially more streamlined than the contemporary Bentley saloons and the stalwart 6.75-litre V8 engine was boosted in power.

For the 1996 model year (chassis numbers between 53001 and 53514), the basic Continental R was priced at £187,354 in the UK. During this year, some of the most significant changes since the launch of the car were introduced, notably the inclusion of the liquid-cooled charge cooler as standard, along with improved engine management ensuring a better throttle response, an increase in fuel efficiency and, digitally controlled, turbo over-boost. It also meant an increase in power output and a change in policy by Rolls-Royce as this was the first time performance figures were officially released by the manufacturer, departing from a long tradition of describing engine power as ‘adequate' or ‘sufficient'. 

Leaving the Bentley factory at Crewe in 1996, this delightful motor car was first registered on the 20th May of that year to billionaire businessman Chris Lazari, the first of three owners. During their subsequent tenures, the car travelled some 54,000 miles and the Bentley was obviously faultlessly maintained as the Champagne Metallic coachwork gleams, the Gold piped Magnolia leather is in wonderful condition as are the burr walnut dashboard and door cappings. The history file includes the original handbook and book packs and the service book has 11 stamps in it. All previous MOT Certificates are present which show the mileage as accurate and the car will be presented to auction with a fresh MOT.  The Bentley has been serviced at the following intervals:

10/07/1996 Mead of Burnham Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Surrey at 889 miles

04/02/1997 Mead of Burnham Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Surrey at 4,251 miles

21/10/1997 Mead of Burnham Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Surrey at 8,515 miles

07/07/1998 Mead of Burnham Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Surrey at 11,830 miles

21/09/1999 Mead of Burnham Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Surrey at 14,676 miles

05/04/2000 Mead of Burnham Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Surrey at 20,662 miles

15/12/2000 Hadley Green Garage Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Hertfordshire 23,595 miles

24/10/2001 Hadley Green Garage Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Hertfordshire at 27,514 miles

15/06/2002 Hadley Green Garage Rolls-Royce & Bentley, Hertfordshire at 30,252 miles

23/06/2005 Bentley Hadley Green, Hertfordshire at 42,571 miles

??/??/2011 Simon Ball Rolls-Royce & Bentley Specialist, Shropshire at 52,121 miles

??/??/2014 Cheshire Classic Cars Ltd., Cheshire at 53,454 miles

In contrast to its considerably more common successor the Continental GT, the graceful 'R' is rare and has begun to stretch its legs in the classic car market. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the last of the line of true 'British' Bentleys.