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1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I

Vehicle Profiles

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Boattail Tourer
Coachwork: FLM Panelcraft

Chassis Num: 99EH

The Rolls-Royce 'New Phantom' was introduced in 1925, replacing the legendary and aging Silver Ghost. This new model was an evolution of the Ghost, with a new engine featuring overhead valves and larger displacement of 7,668cc. Three years later, i....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Derby Speedster
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S 245 FP
Engine Num: 22457

The 'New Phantom', later to become known as the Phantom I, was introduced by Rolls-Royce in 1926. It was a replacement for the tried-and-true, world-renowned Silver Ghost. The Roll-Royce of America factory in Springfield, Massachusetts, which had b....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Riviera Town Car
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S184PM
Engine Num: 21846

After opening its new plant in Springfield, Massachusetts, the first Springfield-built Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost chassis was delivered in 1921. The first left-hand-drive Rolls-Royce was built in 1925. In 1927 the Springfield factory introduced the New....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Derby Speedster
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S185FR
Engine Num: 21858

Rolls-Royce of America offered 20 different body styles on the Phantom I. There were a select number of open styles including the Derby Speedster. Designed by John S. Inskip of Brewster & Co., they had polished-aluminum belt molding, folding windscre....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Town Car
Coachwork: Hibbard and Darrin

Chassis Num: S275FP
Engine Num: 22757

This Rolls-Royce Phantom I was built at the Rolls-Royce factory in Springfield, Massachusetts, hence it is known to automobile aficionados as a 'Springfield Rolls Royce.'....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Sedanca DeVille
Coachwork: Hibbard and Darrin

Chassis Num: S187RP
Engine Num: 21877

This Phantom I is one of only two chassis believed to be bodied by Hibbard & Darrin. It has gold-plated hardware, a Rolls-Royce silent clock, a sterling silver brandy set for two, a sterling silver cigarette holder with matching lighter case, and eig....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Newmarket Convertible Sedan
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S393KP
Engine Num: 20938
Vin Num: 5521

This Rolls-Royce Phantom 1 is painted in black paintwork and accented with red striping. There is a polished aluminum hood and covered wheels. It wears a Newmarket Convertible All-weather coachwork courtesy of Brewster & Co. It has a history known fr....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Sports Tourer

Chassis Num: 17 EX

This 1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I, chassis number 17 EX, is an experimental factory car used to develop a more sporting Rolls-Royce to compete with race-winning Bentleys of the period. Its aerodynamic body was designed by Jarvis of Wimbledon, and an en....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Tilbury Saloon

Chassis Num: S123RP

Edith Archibald of New York City was the first owner of chassis S123RP, a Springfield Phantom I Tilbury Saloon. In 1989, it was purchased by William Ruger Sr. and used on several long tours, most notably from Prescott, Arizona to Pebble Beach. The ca....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

All Weather Touring Landaulet
Coachwork: Caffyns

Chassis Num: 49FH
Engine Num: VH35

This 1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I All Weather Touring Sedan/Landaulet has coachwork courteous of Caffyns of Eastbourne, Sussex. It sits atop of a 143.5-inch wheelbase and is powered by a six-cylinder engine capable of producing a respectable 120 horsep....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Special Roadster
Coachwork: Hibbard and Darrin

Chassis Num: S297FP
Engine Num: 22977

This Phantom I Special Roadster wears coachwork by Hibbard & Darrin of Paris. Founded in 1926 by Americans Thomas L. Hibbard, a co-founder of LeBaron coachbuilders, and designer Howard 'Dutch' Darrin. The duo designed and built cars through 1931. In ....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Pall Mall Tourer
Coachwork: Merrimac

Chassis Num: S103RP
Engine Num: 21037

This Rolls-Royce Phantom I Pall Mall wears coachwork by the Merrimac Body Company. The car was delivered new on April 11th of 1928 to C.C. Walker of Manchester, Massachusetts. It original wore a more formal enclosed body by Brewster 'Lonsdale.' It wa....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Skiff
Coachwork: Mulliner

Chassis Num: 114WR
Engine Num: BD25

An order for this Rolls-Royce was placed on the 27th of June in 1928 by British Army Lt. Colonel (later Sir) James Nockells Horlick, O.B.E., M.C., M.P., of Little Paddocks, Sunninghill, Berkshire, England. He ordered this Phantom 1 Series G2B short-w....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Ascot Tourer
Coachwork: Brewster

Introduced in 1925, the Phantom I, originally named the New Phantom, but became known as the Phantom I after the introduction of the Phantom II, was the successor to the Silver Ghost. Examples to come from the company's plant in Springfield, Massachu....[continue reading]

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I vehicle information

Tourer
Coachwork: Peter Thomas

Chassis Num: 70KR
Engine Num: VJ65

The Rolls-Royce New Phantom, retrospectively called the Phantom I, served as a replacement for the 40/50 HP Silver Ghost in May of 1925. ....[continue reading]

Boattail Tourer by FLM Panelcraft
Chassis #: 99EH 
Derby Speedster by Brewster
Chassis #: S 245 FP 
Riviera Town Car by Brewster
Chassis #: S184PM 
Derby Speedster by Brewster
Chassis #: S185FR 
Town Car by Hibbard and Darrin
Chassis #: S275FP 
Sedanca DeVille by Hibbard and Darrin
Chassis #: S187RP 
Newmarket Convertible Sedan by Brewster
Chassis #: S393KP 
Sports Tourer
Chassis #: 17 EX 
Tilbury Saloon
Chassis #: S123RP 
All Weather Touring Landaulet by Caffyns
Chassis #: 49FH 
Special Roadster by Hibbard and Darrin
Chassis #: S297FP 
Pall Mall Tourer by Merrimac
Chassis #: S103RP 
Skiff by Mulliner
Chassis #: 114WR 
Ascot Tourer by Brewster
 
Tourer by Peter Thomas
Chassis #: 70KR 

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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