Vehicle Profiles

Convertible Sedan
Coachwork: Brewster

The production of the Rolls-Royce 40/50, also known as the Silver Ghost, started in 1921 in the United States to reduce manufacturing costs and void hefty import duties. In 1925, the Phantom I was introduced in Britain and a year later in the United....[continue reading]

Transformable
Coachwork: Hibbard and Darrin

Chassis Num: S317KP
Engine Num: 20178

It was 1925 and the fabled Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost, which had been launched in 1906, was being retired. After seven years of testing, the six-cylinder Phantom chassis was introduced. The New Phantom, as it was called, received the Phantom I designat....[continue reading]

Springfield Dover Tourer
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S123 PR

This Springfield Rolls-Royce Phantom I, S123 PR, with a Brewster Coachworks special Dover body style, was constructed for Jacob Lang of Buffalo, NY. Unique are the Marchal headlights, the side mounted spare tires and landau bars. The car has no divis....[continue reading]

Touring
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S126PR
Engine Num: B5750

This Brewster-bodied Rolls-Royce Phantom I Newmarket was given a restoration in the 1990s. It was entered in the Primary Division at the 1998 CCCA Grand Classic Annual meet where it won first place. It has its CCCA Senior Badge number 2227.....[continue reading]

Newmarket Tourer
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S484MR

Arthur M. Loew took delivery of this Phantom I Newmarket on June 3rd of 1930 in New York City, NY. As the only formal, fully open Brewster model, the Newmarket was a specialty for the ultra-wealthy. It was finished in black with clean black wheel dis....[continue reading]

Springfield Tourer
Coachwork: Brewster

This Phantom I open touring car, one of thirty built by Brewster, was first sold to a New York stockbroker. It has the rare rounded fenders and open top as found on the very best Rolls-Royce of the period. It has retained all its original features an....[continue reading]

York Roadster
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S111FR
Engine Num: 21118

This Rolls-Royce Phantom I wears York Roadster coachwork in the style of Brewster. Enfield Restorations in Enfield, Connecticut undertook the restoration and coach building. It is finished in two-tone green and has a tan cloth top.....[continue reading]

Convertible Sedan by Brewster
 
Transformable by Hibbard and Darrin
Chassis #: S317KP 
Springfield Dover Tourer by Brewster
Chassis #: S123 PR 
Touring by Brewster
Chassis #: S126PR 
Newmarket Tourer by Brewster
Chassis #: S484MR 
Springfield Tourer by Brewster
 
York Roadster by Brewster
Chassis #: S111FR 

History

Although the Silver Ghost had been constantly improved over its life span, by the 1920's other manufacturers had begun to close the performance gap, and the decision was made to produce a new car.
By 1925, the New Phantom (retrospectively called the Phantom I when the Phantom II was introduced in 1929) was ready.

A new chassis had not been built so the car used the Ghost chassis. This meant that initially the only difference between the Ghost and the New Phantom was the method of mounting the steering column on the chassis and the new power unit. The six-cylinder overhead valve engine was similar in many ways to the Twenty, but was of 7,668cc. This was over twice the capacity of the little Twenty at 3,127cc.

The Phantom had been prepared in great secrecy, as would its namesake be, 70 years later. During its development the car was codenamed EAC, which stood for Easter Armored Car. Pieces of armor plating were even left around the factory to lend credence to this cover-up story.

Two chassis lengths were offered, the standard being 190.25 inches (4.83m) with a 196.75 inches (4.99m) version for more formal coachwork.

A special open sporting body was fitted to the fourth experimental chassis and even though the New Phantom's engine performed better than that of the Silver Ghost, the New Phantom was found to have a slightly lower top speed. This led to Rolls-Royce testing at Brooklands to investigate the effect of weight and, more importantly, of aerodynamics in relation to performance. With completely redesigned bodywork, this car subsequently ran at around 100 mph.

Source - Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Ltd.

Rolls Royce launched the new Phantom in May of 1925. Rolls-Royce's replacement for the original Silver Ghost, the Phantom was built in both the U.K. and the U.S. following a year later in introduction and two years in replacement. Usually listed as Phantom I, it featured a new pushrod-OHV straight- 6 engine, which was a vast improvement over the Silver Ghost. The engine was constructed with three groups of two cylinders with detachable heads, and produced impressive power that could pull the large, very heavy vehicle. This engine utilized a '4¼ in (107.9 mm) bore and long 5½ in (139.7 mm) stroke for a total of 7.7 L (7668 cc/467 in³) of displacement'. In 1928, aluminum was substituted for cast iron in the cylinder heads.

The front was suspended by semi-elliptical springs while cantilever springs were utilized in the rear. Though some original U.S. models lacked front brakes, 4-wheel servo-assisted brakes were also specified.

UK models featured a long-wheelbase model that was longer at 3822.7 mm than the American version at 3721.1 mm. Other differences between the two models included the transmission, while the UK models used a 4-speed while US models used a 3-speed transmission, both with a single dry-plate clutch. The US Phantoms were constructed in Springfield, Massachusetts while UK models were built at Rolls' Derby factory.

A total of 226 Rolls-Royce Phantom I's were produced during its production span.

By Jessica Donaldson
Frederick Henry Royce was an engineer and the Honorable Charles Stewart Rolls was a man with many talents. He was an aviator, driver, and automobile enthusiasts. In the world of business, he excelled at marketing.

The Rolls-Royce Company began its distinguished career in the early 1900's, focusing on quality and performance. During 1905 and 1906, forty vehicles were produced, all with four-cylinder engines producing 20 horsepower.

1906 was a big year for the young company, with Charles Stewart Rolls and Frederick Henry Royce officially registering the Rolls-Royce Limited Company. The legendary 40/50 six-cylinder Silver Ghost was introduced with much acclaim. During the same year, Rolls and Royce entered the Tourist Trophy Race, one of the most prestigious events of the time. Their powerful and durable car outran the rest of pack, beating the nearest competitor by 27 minutes. In 1907 the company further showcased their vehicles durability by participating in a 15,000 mile reliability event.

In a time when maintenance and durability were on the minds of every consumer, Rolls-Royce left their buyers with peace of mind. To add even more prestige to their vehicles, the vehicles were marketed to the most elite and well-to-do in society. By supplying their vehicles to British royalty, the Rolls-Royce Company concreted their reputation in history. The cars durability was matched by its comfort; they were outfitted with luxurious bodies by some of the top coachbuilders in the industry. The engines were powerful and provided a rather smooth and comfortable ride. The engines were engineering marvels, constructed of an aluminum alloy crankcase. Instead of chains, the timing and ignition drive were both run by gears. The parts were hand polished and constructed to a high degree of accuracy. The sturdy construction meant that conversation were possible, even while the vehicle was at top speed.

The 40/50 HP Silver Ghost models were sold for a period of fifteen years as the companies only offering. By 1922, the Rolls-Royce Company began offering the Twenty which was offered to a larger market, though still very exclusive. Competition such as Hispano Suiza had caught up with Rolls-Royce by 1925; Rolls-Royce responded. Development began on a more modern version of its Silver Ghost engine that would be more powerful and durable. The stroke was enlarged providing a greater increase in horsepower. The resulting vehicle was named the '40/50 New Phantom'. When the Phantom II was introduced in 1929, the '40/50 New Phantom' was retrospectively named the Phantom I.

Phantom I

The Phantom was built in secrecy, using the code name EAC which stood for Easter Armored Car. To reinforce the code name, pieces of armor plating was intentially left around the factory. The Phantom I was the successor to the Silver Ghost and produced for only four years. Though the engine had been modified to produce more horsepower and torque, the chassis was only slightly updated. This would prove to be a major drawback for the Phantom I.

In 1921 a Rolls-Royce factory had been opened in Springfield Massachusetts with the purpose of producing Silver Ghosts that were built with traditional Rolls-Royce quality but catered to the American customer. These vehicles were known as the 'Springfield' Silver Ghosts.

A year after the Phantom was introduced, the 'Springfield' Phantom became available. The late arrival was attributed to necessary modifications, such as converting to left hand drive. The Springfield plant continued Rolls-Royce production until 1931, when the American factory was closed.


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20/25HP
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Silver Cloud I, II, and III
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Image Left 1929 Phantom I1931 Phantom I Image Right
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