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Registration number: AAA 533
Indicated mileage: 25,229
Engine: 3669 cc. 6 cylinder push rod operated overhead valve
Body number: C735
We are delighted to welcome back an old friend, since we previously sold this lovely 'Derby' to its current owner 5 years ago. In the intervening years, we have regularly maintained the car and carried out a series of modest improvements to the interior, suspension, wiring, electrical and cooling systems. The owner genuinely loves this car, but a posting abroad means it sees too little use.
The 3 ½ litre was the first Bentley to be produced after the merger between Bentley and Rolls Royce in 1931. A total of 1177 were produced between 1933 and 1937, of which 529 were bodied by Park Ward. It was an instant success for the company, providing a new form of sports car motoring.
This particular example, chassis number B85CW, was originally bought new by the 6th Earl of Carnarvon from the renowned Bentley dealer, Jack Barclay, with the original registration number JB 100. In January 1935, it was delivered to Lord Carnarvon’s family seat, Highclere Castle, which most will recognise today as the setting of the highly-acclaimed TV series and film, ‘Downton Abbey’.
Information gleaned by Lord Carnarvon’s secretary in 1993 from Jack Gibbons (his chauffeur at the time), states that the car was later sold back to Jack Barclay who, before selling it on, kept the original registration number and assigned the present registration AAA 533.
The car comes with an interesting history file and various Bentley-related information mainly covering the 35-year ownership of the last owner but one.
The car is eminently usable and drives very well, whilst also offering its next owner the chance to own a small piece of British history. The car comes with a complete original toolkit and is available for viewing and test drive here at our workshops.