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1953 Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sports Saloon / BC1LB Vehicle Information

1953 Bentley R-Type photograph

1953 Bentley R-Type photograph

1953 Bentley R-Type photograph

1953 Bentley R-Type photograph

1953 Bentley R-Type1953 Bentley R-Type1953 Bentley R-Type1953 Bentley R-Type
Sold for $1,435,000 at 2021 RM Sothebys : Monterey.
The Type R Continental Bentley was introduced as the 'Continental Sports Saloon' in 1952. Bentley worked closely with H.J. Mulliner to develop a lightweight performance version of the postwar Mark VI Bentley. By using aluminum panels, the weight was cut form 4,078 pounds for the standard sedan to 3,739 pounds. It was the fastest 4-psasenger vehicle in the world at introduction, capable of 120 miles per hour.

This model has the upgraded 4.9 liter, water-cooled, F-Head (overhead inlet-side exhaust), 6-cylinder engine, with a center shift 4-speed manual gearbox. It is believed that fewer than 10 units were built to these specifications.

It was re-built/rebodied by the Bentley factory and H.J. Mulliner in 1954 and returned to the first owners with a fresh warranty.

Sold for $1,435,000 at 2021 RM Sothebys : Monterey.
This Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sports Saloon by H.J. Mulliner is one of two of the second-series 'B' models supplied with both left-hand drive and the center-shift manual transmission. It was fitted from new with lightweight aluminum frame bucket seats and Wilmot Breedon bumpers, as well as the rear fender 'spats' common to all R-Type Continentals through the late 'C' series. It was installed from the factory with the 4.6-liter engine as the 4.9-liter unit did not yet exist - it was introduced for the final 'D' and 'E' cars later, in 1954.

The car's original owner was J. Gordon Mack, of the Pennsylvania family that owned the G.C. Murphy variety store chain. Mr. Mach took delivery of the Bentley on July 16th of 1953 via New York distributor J.S. Inskip. A short time later (less than a year), the car was involved in a serious accident and was returned to the factory where it was totally remanufactured to the most current specification. The chassis was rebuilt to the latest, and lighter, welded-frame construction, and fitted with a new 4.9-litre engine. It was then sent to Mulliner for new coachwork to the original design, no. 5706. Some of the original trim hardware was reused from the first iteration. In this guise, the car was considered 'new' by the factory, and another three-year guarantee was issued.

In the summer of 1954, the car returned back to the United States, but Mr. Mack passed away soon thereafter. On October 3rd of 1956, Inskip sold the car for the estate to the second owner, Robert Publicker. On January 26th of 1961, the car was again sold by Inskip, this time to Edmond R. du Pont of Delaware. On July 18th of 1966, it was acquired by Anthony Thompson, who in January 1980 passed it to Alan W. Rothschild. The car was restored in 1988 to its present Masons Black livery with Tan leather interior. Between 1989 and 1992, the car earned RROC Senior awards, and in 1990 it earned an AACA National Senior First Prize for Mr. Rothschild.

In 1997, the car was sent to Vantage Motorworks and received an air conditioning system that duplicates that fitted to the 1953 New York show car, the only R-Type Continental known to have been delivered air-conditioned from the factory.

In its current ownership, the Bentley was given a correct-style aluminum radiator from the UK, and an upgrade to the big-valve, six-port cylinder head, as used on the Bentley S1, along with larger SU carburetors, a special distributor, and a larger-diameter tailpipe. Known as the 'OPWAS modification,' this was originally available through the factory as a retrofit to earlier Continentals in 1955.

The current caretaker has driven the car in the 2012 Copperstate 1000 where it earned the Distance Award. It received the Best Rolls-Royce or Bentley trophy from the Greystone Mansion Concours in 2012, Best in Class at the Amelia Island Concours in 2013, Best in Class during the Bentley feature year at Mar-a-Lago Classic Sports Sunday in 2014, and Most Elegant Bentley at the Boca Raton Concours d'Elegance in 2019 (the Bentley Motors centenary year).

In 2019, the car returned to Vantage Motorworks for mechanical service and cosmetic freshening, including the fitment of new Wilton carpets.


By Daniel Vaughan | Nov 2021



2021 RM Sothebys : Monterey

Pre-Auction Estimates :
USD $1,300,000-USD $1,600,000 
Sale Price :
USD $1,435,000

1953 Bentley R-Type Auction Sales

Recent Sales

(Data based on Model Year 1953 sales)
1953 Bentley R-Type Empress Saloon
Chassis#: B25RS
Sold for USD$44,265
  2021 Worldwide Auctioneers : The 14th Annual Auburn Auction
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Saloon
Chassis#: B378TN
Sold for USD$29,150
  2021 RM Auctions : Auburn Fall
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sports Saloon by H.J. Mulliner
Chassis#: BC1LB
Sold for USD$1,435,000
  2021 RM Sothebys : Monterey
1953 Bentley R-Type image  1953 Bentley R-Type image  
1953 BENTLEY R-TYPE SALOON
Chassis#: B11SP
Sold for USD$81,003
  2021 RM Sothebys : A Passion for Elegance
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Empress by Hooper
Chassis#: B320TN
Sold for USD$49,500
  2020 RM Sothebys : Auburn Fall Auction
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Saloon (Standard Steel )
Chassis#: B501SP
Sold for USD$31,445
  2019 Historics at Brooklands - Motor Museum
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Saloon
Sold for USD$12,375
  2019 RM Auctions : Auburn Fall
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Saloon
Chassis#: B66TN
Sold for USD$12,375
  2019 Auburn Spring : RM Auctions
 
1953 Bentley R-Type 4½-Litre Drophead Coupé
Chassis#: B73RS
Sold for USD$115,744
  2019 Bonhams : Goodwood Members Meeting
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Saloon
Chassis#: B402TN
Sold for USD$46,750
  2019 RM Sothebys : Fort Lauderdale
 
1953 Bentley R-Type
Sold for USD$44,000
  2019 Mecum : Kissimmee
 
1953 Bentley R Type
Sold for USD$11,550
  2018 Mecum : Kansas City
 
1953 BENTLEY R TYPE RHD
Sold for USD$39,900
  2018 McCormick's - # 65
 
1953 BENTLEY R-TYPE SEDAN
Chassis#: B417SP
Sold for USD$25,850
  2018 Barrett-Jackson : Northeast
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Saloon
Chassis#: B95UL
Sold for USD$23,076
  2017 Bonhams : London Olympia
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Saloon Coachwork by James Young
Chassis#: B372SR
Sold for USD$19,575
  2017 Bonhams : The Beaulieu Sale
 
1953 Bentley R-Type
Chassis#: B358TN
Sold for USD$33,082
  2016 Silverstone Auctions : NEC Classic Motor Show
 
1953 Bentley Type R
Chassis#: B427SP
Sold for USD$17,600
  2016 The Finest : Aspen
 
1953 BENTLEY R-TYPE SALOON
Chassis#: B119TO
Sold for USD$15,658
  2016 Coys Blenheim Palace
 
1953 Bentley R-Type Saloon
Chassis#: B125T0
Sold for USD$30,579
  2015 H & H Auctions - Chateau Impney
 

Vehicles That Failed To Sell

1953 Bentley R-Type's that have appeared at auction but did not sell.
VehicleChassisEventHigh BidEst. LowEst. High
1953 BENTLEY R-TYPE SALOONB484SR2021 Bonhams : Bonhams MPH May Auction $28,000$30,000
1953 Bentley Continental 4.9-litre Sports SaloonBC22A2020 Bonhams : The Bond Street Sale $550,000$700,000
1953 Bentley R-Type Continental Sports SaloonBC27C2020 Bonhams : Goodwood Speedweek $800,000$1,000,000
1953 Bentley R-Type Continental Sports Saloon by H.J. MullinerBC15B2020 RM Sothebys : Paris $700,000$800,000
1953 Bentley R-Type 2020 Mecum Auctions : Kissimmee$35,000$60,000$80,000
1953 Bentley R-Type Continental Sports SaloonBC20C2019 Bonhams : The Bond Street Sale $900,000$1,100,000
1953 Bentley R-Type SaloonB572TN2019 H & H Classics Imperial War Museum, Duxford $29,000$33,000
1953 Bentley R-Type 4½-Litre CoupéB135SP2019 Bonhams : The Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale $100,000$150,000
1953 BENTLEY R TYPE488TN2019 The Roy Savage Collection of Classic Cars $65,000$75,000
1953 Bentley R-Type SR5 Special RoadsterB61UL2018 Bonhams : Goodwood Members Meeting $70,000$90,000
1953 Bentley R-Type Continental Sports Saloon by H.J. MullinerBC20A2017 RM Sothebys : Villa Erba $1,000,000$1,300,000
1953 Bentley R-TypeB135TO2017 Barons : Classic Winter Warmer   
1953 Bentley R Type Continental FastbackBC20A2016 Barons Connoisseurs Classic Car Collection   
1953 Bentley R-Type Continental FastbackBC10LB2015 Gooding & Company : Pebble Beach Concours $1,400,000$1,800,000
1953 Bentley R-Type Standard Steel SaloonB245UL2015 Historics at Brookland $15,000$20,000
1953 Bentley R-TypeB84T2012 Russo and Steele Scottsdale   
1953 Bentley R Sedan 2011 Branson Collector Car Auction Oct 22, 2011$33,000  
1953 Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback by MullinerBC3C2011 Coys Auction Blenheim Palace $290,000$330,000
1953 Bentley R-Type Convertible Coachwork by Park WardB38CO5R2011 Coys Auction Blenheim Palace $55,000$70,000

Comparables

Similar sales to the $178,289 range.
1967 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 4.2-Litre Roadster
Chassis#:1E 14936
Sold for $178,932
2021 RM Sothebys : The Guikas Collection
1957 Aston Martin DB2/4 MkII Fixed Head Coupe
Chassis#:AM300/1272
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Greenwich Concours dElegance Online Auction
1958 Jaguar XK150S Roadster
Chassis#:T831417DN
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Greenwich Concours dElegance Online Auction
Pininfarina Leggenda eClassic Simulator
Sold for $177,346
2021 RM Sothebys : St. Moritz, Switzerland
1911 Packard Model 18 Runabout
Chassis#:19101
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Quail Lodge
1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  
1956 Austin-Healey 100M BN2 Le Mans
Chassis#:BN2L233087
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Quail Lodge
1934 Bugatti Type 57 Galibier
Chassis#:57224
Sold for $179,200
2021 Gooding & Company : Pebble Beach Concours Auction
1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  
1987 Porsche 930 3.3 Turbo Coupe
Chassis#:WP0JB0930HS050814
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Quail Lodge
1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  
1970 Maserati Ghibli 4.7 Coupe
Chassis#:AM115.1568
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Quail Lodge
1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  
1999 Ferrari 456M GT
Chassis#:ZFFWP44A6X0114788
Sold for $179,200
2021 RM Sothebys : Monterey
1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  
1987 Porsche 911 Turbo Cabriolet
Chassis#:WP0EB0932HS070113
Sold for $179,200
2021 RM Sothebys : Monterey
1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  
1975 Porsche 911 Turbo Carrera
Chassis#:9305700098
Sold for $179,200
2021 RM Sothebys : Monterey
2019 Bentley Bentayga
Sold for $178,750
2021 Mecum : Orlando
1969 FORD BRONCO CUSTOM SUV
Chassis#:U15GLE94611
Sold for $178,200
2021 Barrett-Jackson : Las Vegas
2021 DODGE DURANGO SRT HELLCAT AWD
Chassis#:1C4SDJH90MC662364
Sold for $180,000
2021 Barrett-Jackson : Las Vegas
1907 LOCOMOBILE MODEL H 35HP TOURING CAR
Chassis#:1578
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Amelia Island Auction
1933 ROLLS-ROYCE PHANTOM II ALL-WEATHER TOURER
Chassis#:110MY
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Amelia Island Auction
1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  
1936 PACKARD TWELVE 1708 DUAL COWL SPORT PHAETON
Chassis#:904299
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Amelia Island Auction
1931 HUDSON GREATER EIGHT BOATTAIL ROADSTER
Chassis#:924469
Sold for $179,200
2021 Bonhams : Amelia Island Auction
1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  1953 Bentley R-Type vehicle thumbnail image  
1930 ASTON MARTIN 1½-LITRE INTERNATIONAL 'SHORT CHASSIS' SPORTS TOURER
Chassis#:L0/92
Sold for $178,953
2021 Bonhams : The Bond Street Sale

Bentley R-Type Vehicle Profiles
Continental Fastback Sport Saloon
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sport Saloon

Model Year: 1952
Profile
Drop Head Coupe
Bentley R-Type Drop Head Coupe

Model Year: 1952
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Model Year: 1952

Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Model Year: 1952
Drophead Coupe
Bentley R-Type Drophead Coupe

Coachbuilder: Abbotts of Farnham
Chassis Num: B18RT
Model Year: 1952
Profile
Coupe
Bentley R-Type Coupe

Coachbuilder: Abbotts of Farnham
Chassis Num: B2RT
Engine Num: B1R
Model Year: 1952
Profile and Auction History

Continental Fastback Sport Saloon
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sport Saloon

Chassis Num: BC14LA
Engine Num: BCC4
Model Year: 1952
Profile and Auction History
Continental Sports Saloon
Bentley R-Type Continental Sports Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC26A
Model Year: 1952
Profile
Continental Fastback Sport Saloon
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sport Saloon

Chassis Num: BC7A
Model Year: 1952
Profile and Auction History

Continental Fastback Sport Saloon
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sport Saloon

Chassis Num: BC8LA
Engine Num: BCA8
Model Year: 1952
Profile and Auction History
Continental Fastback Sport Saloon
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sport Saloon

Chassis Num: BCA1
Engine Num: BCA1
Model Year: 1952
Profile and Auction History
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Model Year: 1953

Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Model Year: 1953
Sedanca Coupe
Bentley R-Type Sedanca Coupe

Coachbuilder: James Young
Model Year: 1953
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Model Year: 1953
Profile

Drophead Victoria
Bentley R-Type Drophead Victoria

Coachbuilder: Park Ward & Co.
Model Year: 1953
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Chassis Num: B-157-TO B-78 T
Engine Num: B 006157
Model Year: 1953
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Freestone & Webb
Chassis Num: B121SP
Model Year: 1953
Profile and Auction History

Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Chassis Num: B157UL
Model Year: 1953
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Chassis Num: B84T
Model Year: 1953
Drophead Coupe
Bentley R-Type Drophead Coupe

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: B9T0
Model Year: 1953
Profile and Auction History

Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC16LA
Engine Num: BCA15
Model Year: 1953
Profile and Auction History
Continental Fastback Sports Saloon
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback Sports Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC1LB
Engine Num: BCB1
Model Year: 1953
Profile and Auction History
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC20A
Engine Num: BCA19
Model Year: 1953
Profile and Auction History

Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC25A
Engine Num: BCA24
Model Year: 1953
Profile and Auction History
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC9C
Model Year: 1953
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Model Year: 1954
Profile

Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Model Year: 1954
Sport Saloon
Bentley R-Type Sport Saloon

Coachbuilder: James Young
Model Year: 1954
Profile
Sport Saloon
Bentley R-Type Sport Saloon

Coachbuilder: James Young
Model Year: 1954
Profile

Fastback Coupe
Bentley R-Type Fastback Coupe

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Model Year: 1954
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Model Year: 1954
Drophead Coupe
Bentley R-Type Drophead Coupe

Coachbuilder: Park Ward & Co.
Model Year: 1954
Profile

Drophead Coupe
Bentley R-Type Drophead Coupe

Coachbuilder: Park Ward & Co.
Chassis Num: B132LTN
Model Year: 1954
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Park Ward & Co.
Chassis Num: BC29D
Engine Num: BED28
Model Year: 1954
Profile
Fastback Coupe
Bentley R-Type Fastback Coupe

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC2LD
Model Year: 1954
Profile and Auction History

Continental Fastback
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC35LC
Model Year: 1954
Profile
Saloon
Bentley R-Type Saloon

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC38LC
Model Year: 1954
Profile
Coupe
Bentley R-Type Coupe

Coachbuilder: Franay
Chassis Num: BC51LC
Engine Num: BCC50
Model Year: 1954
Profile and Auction History

Fastback Coupe
Bentley R-Type Fastback Coupe

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC62LC
Model Year: 1954
Profile and Auction History
Drophead Coupe
Bentley R-Type Drophead Coupe

Coachbuilder: Henri Chapron
Chassis Num: BC63LC
Model Year: 1954
Profile
Fastback Coupe
Bentley R-Type Fastback Coupe

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC66LC
Engine Num: BCC65
Model Year: 1954
Profile and Auction History

Continental Fastback
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Model Year: 1955
Profile
Continental Fastback
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Model Year: 1955
Profile
Sports Coupe
Bentley R-Type Sports Coupe

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Model Year: 1955
Profile

Continental Fastback
Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC16LD
Model Year: 1955
Profile
Continental Fastback
no image available

Coachbuilder: Mulliner
Chassis Num: BC16LD
Model Year: 1955


Vehicle information, history, And specifications from concept to production.
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