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Bentley History

1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter

Chassis number : B137LE

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Sold for $225,500 at 2013 RM Auctions - Amelia Island.
The 'Derby Bentley' was the 3 1/2 liter, which was based upon the Rolls-Royce 20/25 chassis but with a high-performance engine with crossflow head, higher compression ratio, twin SU carburetors, and a re-profiled camshaft. The engine was increased in 1936 to 4.25 liters by using the new 25/30 Rolls-Royce engine. In this guise, the 'silent sports car' finally found its niche.

This All-Weather Tourer is chassis B37LE and is an 'LE' specification chassis, and one of only 100 produced. The top speed is not as high as the later 'LX' series cars, which were equipped with overdrive, but many drivers agree that the gears on the 'LE' are spaced more tightly together, making the car considerably more comfortable to drive at speeds below 50 mph.

This car was originally owned by J.T. Johnson who had the chassis delivered to Thrupp & Maberly for the bodywork. It is a four-door, four-passenger convertible tourer with a fabric top that lies neatly when folded for a clean appearance. Johnson accepted delivery in June 1939.

The car currently retains its original bodywork, chassis, and engine. It has a side-mounted Continental touring spare and finished in period-correct deep blue over black, with blue leather upholstery and walnut trim. In the front are imposing headlamps, driving lamp, and accessory horn, as well as a nearly complete tool kit.

The 4257cc overhead valve six-cylinder engine is fitted with twin SU carburetors and develops 126 horsepower. There is a four-speed manual gearbox, a wheelbase that measures 126 inches, and four-wheel mechanical drum brakes.


By Daniel Vaughan | May 2013

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2013 RM Auctions - Amelia Island

Pre-Auction Estimates :
USD $200,000-USD $250,000 
Sale Price :
USD $225,500

1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter Auction Sales

Recent Sales of the Bentley 4.25-Liter

(Data based on Model Year 1938 sales)
1938 Bentley 4¼-Litre Sedanca Coupé by Gurney Nutting
Chassis#: B187LE
Sold for USD$323,766
  2020 RM Sothebys : London Online
 
1938 Bentley 4 ¼-litre
Chassis#: B66LS
Sold for USD$70,049
  2020 Bonhams July Motoring Auction
 
1938 Bentley 4¼ Litre Open Tourer
Sold for USD$78,547
  2019 Shannons - Sydney Autumn Classic
 
1938 Bentley 4 1/4 L Coupé Vanvooren
Chassis#: B-132-LS
Sold for USD$341,040
  2018 Artcurial : Retromobile
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter image  1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter image  
1938 Bentley 4 1/4 Sportsman's Coupe by De Villars
Chassis#: B8MR
Sold for USD$181,176
  2017 Coys : Thoroughbred & Vintage at Fontwell House
 
1938 BENTLEY 4¼ LITRE MR OVERDRIVE
Chassis#: B28MR
Sold for USD$112,990
  2017 Coys Blenheim Palace
 
1938 BENTLEY 4¼-LITRE 'HIGH VISION' COUPÉ
Chassis#: B83LE
Sold for USD$146,259
  2015 Bonhams : The December Sale
 
1938 Bentley 4.25 Litre Sports Saloon
Chassis#: B145KU
Sold for USD$58,626
  2013 H & H Auctions - Chateau Impney
 
1937 Bentley 4¼-Litre Concealed Head Coupe by H.J. Mulliner
Chassis#: B92LS
Sold for USD$341,000
  2013 RM Auctions - Monterey
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter image  1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter image  
1938 Bentley 4¼-Litre 'High Vision' Sports Saloon
Chassis#: B28MR
Sold for USD$104,716
  2013 Bonhams - The Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale
 
1938 Bentley 4¼-Litre All-Weather Tourer by Thrupp & Maberly
Chassis#: B137LE
Sold for USD$225,500
  2013 RM Auctions - Amelia Island
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter image  1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter image  
1938 Bentley 4 ¼ litre
Chassis#: B125LE
Sold for USD$213,136
  2012 Bonhams - Collectors' Motor cars and Automobilia at Goodwood
 
1938 Bentley 4¼-Litre Drophead Coupé
Chassis#: B199LE
Sold for USD$145,066
  2012 Bonhams - Paris, La Halle Freyssinet Motocars
 
1938 Bentley 4 1/4 Litre Cabriolet
Chassis#: B125LE
Sold for USD$234,888
  2010 RM Auctions - Automobiles of London
 
1938 Bentley 4 1/4 Litre All-Weather Cabriolet
Sold for USD$137,500
  2010 Gooding and Company - Pebble Beach Auctions
 
1938 Bentley 4¼ litre MX Vanden Plus Open Tourer
Chassis#: B117MX
Sold for USD$235,842
  2008 Coys Auction -Brands Hatch
 
1938 Bentley 4 ¼ Brougham Semi Razor Edge Saloon
Chassis#: B162 KT
Sold for USD$86,278
  2006 Coys Auction - True Greats
 

Bentley 4.25-Liters That Failed To Sell At Auction

1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter's that have appeared at auction but did not sell.
VehicleChassisEventHigh BidEst. LowEst. High
1938 Bentley 4¼-Litre CoupéB8MR2020 Bonhams : Goodwood Speedweek $140,000$160,000
1938 BENTLEY 4¼-LITRE CABRIOLETB154LS2020 Bonhams : The Bonmont Sale $300,000$500,000
1938 BENTLEY 4¼-LITRE FOUR-DOOR CABRIOLETB125LE2020 Bonhams : The Bonmont Sale $240,000$300,000
1938 Bentley 4 1/4 Litre Boattail SpeedsterB161LE2019 Worldwide Auctioneers : Riyadh Auction   
1938 Bentley 4.25 Litre James Young Sedanca CoupeB72MR2017 H & H Auctions Imperial War MuseumDuxford $180,000$220,000
1938 Bentley 4 1/4 Litre Coupe by De VillarsLotB-8-MR2015 Silverstone Auction Classic Sale $115,000$135,000
1938 Bentley 4.25 Litre Sports SaloonB145KU2014 H & H Auctions Chateau Impney   
1938 Bentley 4 1/4 Litre Drop Head CoupeB153LE2012 Gooding and Company Pebble Beach Auction $150,000$250,000
1938 Bentley 4¼-Litre CoupeB8MR2011 Bonhams The December Sale $80,000$100,000
1938 Bentley 4 1/4 Litre Fixed Head Coupe 2010 Gooding and Company Pebble Beach Auctions $250,000$325,000
1938 Bentley 4 ¼-Liter Derby SpecialB183KU2005 Bonhams RollsRoyce, Bentley Motor Cars and Related Automobilia $40,000$50,000
1938 Bentley 4 ¼-Liter Derby SpecialB183KU2005 Bonhams Collectors' Motor Cars, Motorcycles & Automobilia $40,000$50,000
1938 BENTLEY 4 1/4 LITER CABRIOLET 2003 Bonhams MOTOR CARS $140,000$170,000

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1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter Profiles

1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Sedan
Designer: Park Ward
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Derby Drophead Coupe
Coachwork: Carlton Carriage Company
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Coupe
Coachwork: Vanvooren
Chassis #: B132LS
Engine #: F-4-BH
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Derby Drophead Coupe
Coachwork: Mulliner
Chassis #: B77LE
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Coupe
Coachwork: Vanvooren
Chassis #: B132LS
Engine #: F-4-BH
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Drophead Coupe
Coachwork: Vanden Plas
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Drophead Coupe
Coachwork: Vanden Plas
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Pourtout Coupe
Coachwork: Pourtout
Designer: Georges Paulin
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Drophead Coupe
Coachwork: Cockshoot
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Fixed Head Coupe
Chassis #: B-1-LE
Engine #: T6BT
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Drophead Coupe
Coachwork: Vanden Plas
Chassis #: B153LE
Engine #: G8BH
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Drophead Coupe
Coachwork: Mulliner
Chassis #: B92LS
Engine #: G8BG
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
All-Weather Tourer
Coachwork: Thrupp and Maberly
Chassis #: B137LE
Engine #: C8BL
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Sedanca Coupe
Coachwork: Gurney Nutting
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Drophead Coupe
Coachwork: Vanden Plas
Chassis #: B106MR
1938 Bentley 4.25-Liter vehicle information
Sports Saloon
Coachwork: Park Ward & Co.
Chassis #: B-107-LE