The Bentley S1 (originally simply "Bentley S") was a luxury car produced by Bentley Motors Limited from 1955 until 1959. The S1 was derived from Rolls-Royce's complete redesign of its standard production car after World War II, the Silver Cloud. Each was its maker's last standard production car with an independent chassis. The S-series Bentley was given the Rolls-Royce - Bentley L Series V8 engine in late 1959 and named the S2. Twin headlamps and a facelift to the front arrived in late 1962, resulting in the S3. In late 1965 the S3 was replaced by the new unitary construction Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow-derived T series. A high-performance version S Continental (chassis only) was introduced six months after the introduction of the S1. Lighter weight fixed head and drophead coupé bodies were provided to special order for a premium of about 50% by H. J. Mulliner & Co., Park Ward, James Young and Freestone & Webb. A pre-production 2-seater fixed-head coupé on the new chassis was designed and built for the Bentley factory by Pininfarina.
This exceptional example is largely if not completely original cosmetically, having been well cared for and treated properly its entire life. The car has a known history from new, and is currently in the care of its 4th owner, who has had the car for many years. The car runs and drives flawlessly. It starts right up, runs smoothly, and does not smoke or stutter- the engine had major work including a Valve job and new Piston Rings under previous ownership. Having covered slightly over 100,000 miles since new the car is just the thing for Vintage Touring-and will be a certain star of the Preservation Classes so popular in today's Major Concours d"Elegance.
The flowing lines of the body are somewhat legendary, these Continental Coupes are among the most sought after Post War Bentley's. This body style was produced on both the R Type and S Type Chassis, with far fewer S Types Produced. With very few built new and very high desirability these rarely come to market, making this a rare opportunity to acquire one.
This car has an undeniable honesty that is palpable when you approach the car. As you enter the driver's compartment the smell of vintage leather and woodwork surrounds you. The seats are firm and comfortable, the controls are quick and true, the gauges spring to life and and the car performs as a trusted companion should.
Originality has become the hallmark many collectors look for when acquiring important cars. All too often the original features of a car have been erased by subsequent restorations. There are many catagories of Originality these days ranging from dusty barn finds to what I call Fine Original Cars such as this one. These cars are extremely hard to find- cars that have been well cared for their entire lives that truly represent what their designers and builders intended.
These cars are truly Special cars that serve as benchmarks for the restoration and preservation of other examples. This is a very special car.