Following the closing of the Rolls-Royce assembly plant in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1931, Rolls-Royce made its first delivery of 200 chassis to its Brewster Coachworks in Long Island City, New York. There were many changes needed to make it suitable for the American market, including conversion to left-hand drive, adjustments to the suspension and 20-inch wheels.
This Phantom II Henley Coupe was originally built for Mary Elizabeth Williams, the daughter of insurance magnate Charles F. Williams of Cincinnati, Ohio. Brewster would produce ten Phantom II Henleys, and many believe that this example with its fixed roof was the most attractive. Ms. Williams' one-off Henley Coupe was delivered to her in May 1934, at the sum of nearly $20,000.
Mr. Donald Weesner purchased this Henley Coupe in the mid-1950s. Upon purchase, the car was driven from Cincinnati to his home in Minnesota. The car would stay in Mr. Weesner and his wife's possession for the next 45 years. After nearly a half a century out of sight, the car was offered for public sale in April 1999. The car was purchased by collector and dealer Dennis Nicotra of Connecticut, and soon traded hands twice more within the dealer community. The current owner purchased the car in 2007.
The car is in original condition and it is showing less than 35,000 miles. Recently, the tan canvas top was replaced with black leather.
This Henley Coupe has many unique features such as a flat pane windshield and the upper hood panels that extend all the way to the windshield. It features the trademark twin beltlines which appear to come together at the midpoint of the door.
In 2010, this Rolls-Royce was offered for sale at the Gooding & Company Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona. The car was estimated to sell for $500,000 - $600,000. As bidding came to a close, the lot had been sold for the sum of $528,000, inclusive of buyer's premium.By Daniel Vaughan | Feb 2010