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1961 Bentley S2 Continental

Year : 1961
Make : Bentley
Model : S2 Continental
Coachbuilder : Park Ward
Price : P.O.A.
Body Type : Drophead Coupe
Colour : Dark Blue
Trim : Cream Leather
Condition : Very good condition throughout
Technical Data : Four speed automatic gearbox, power steering, 8 cylinder 90 degree V-configuration engine, 6.2 litres displacement, 6230cc capacity. Drum brakes servo-assisted.


The S1 Continental engine had effectively run its course by 1959 and could not be developed any further. The approximate 160bhp power output was more than sufficient but due to pressures and competition elsewhere Rolls-Royce sought out an improved power unit to deliver more speed whilst retaining the Bentley Continentals refined performance. The answer was a complete move away from the six cylinder inline engine configuration, to an all new V8 engine boasting 6,230cc and an estimated 200bhp boosting the power by nearly 25%. It had been developed at Crewe for some years prior to being fitted to the first S2 Continental chassis at the Hooper works in December of 1959 and was an immediate success. It was constructed almost entirely in aluminium and was of a very similar weight to the S1 Continentals engine, but featured hydraulic tappets to ensure quiet running. A few other mechanical aspects were modified including the braking and lubrication systems, with automatic transmission now a standard fitting, making the Bentley S2 Continental a motor car capable of speeds approaching 120mph. Acquired in 1960 by Rolls-Royce, coachbuilders H.J. Mulliner had largely been entrusted with the creation of the closed body styles on the Continental chassis. Rolls-Royce turned to the experts at Park Ward, who had been owned by Rolls-Royce since before the war, to provide the styling and construction of the future open variants in the Bentley Continental range. Whilst at the Turin Motor Show, some of the Rolls-Royce hierarchy had been impressed with the styling of an Alfa Romeo coupe created by a Norwegian designer named Vilhelm Koren. They were so impressed that the Norwegian freelance designer was brought in to the Crewe styling office and asked to design the new Park Ward drophead coupe body to be fitted to the S2 Continental chassis. The result was quite a departure from the previously familiar lines of the Bentley Continentals of the past, with an all new straight wingline, rear fins and new styled headlamps. Steel was also used in the construction of the body, with it being used to create the floor pan, sills, rear wings and scuttle. The final product proved to be very successful and sold well much to the delight of the vindicated design team at Crewe. It should be noted that a fixed head coupe was also designed by Koren for the S2 Continental chassis, but was never produced. Chassis No BC1CZ is one of just sixty cars built to Design No 991 by Park Ward on the S2 Continental chassis. It was originally completed in July of 1961, finished in blue with an off white hood and off white leather interior. It was then supplied by H.R.Owen to H&J Wilson Ltd of London for the use of Mr S.G.Kingsley. In more recent times the car was acquired by a collection in Europe and restored. The works included restoration to the coachwork, chrome, woodwork, engine, a re-trim and cosmetic works to the engine bay. More recently Frank Dale & Stepsons have carried out a full mechanical review of the car and completed further works to ensure correct performance, reliability and pleasurable motoring. A new hood and headlining was also trimmed and fitted to the car to complete the cosmetic works. The finished article now looks first class and performs beautifully. It is complete with copy chassis cards, invoices documenting the works carried out and is ready for touring.

If you would like to make an enquiry about this vehicle, please contact us by phone on 020 8847 5447 or by email at