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1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost

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The penultimate year for Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost production was 1925, having begun nearly two decades earlier, with total output eventually reaching 7,874 units before it was replaced by the New Phantom. The 40/50 hp models were initially built at Royce's Manchester facilities before moving to Derby, England in 1908. Between 1921 and 1926, they were also built in Springfield, Massachusetts. The company announced in 1920 that 'A limited number of Rolls-Royce chassis will be produced at the American Works, the same quality of materials will be employed as in England. F. Henry Royce is Engineer-in-Chief of the American operations. The products of the American works will be drawn on for English as well as American patrons.'

Rolls-Royce vehicles had come to the United States early in its production, in 1906, when C.S.Rolls himself brought three cars to race at New York's Empire City track. In 1913, a New York depot was established with coachbuilders Brewster & Co., who bodied the majority of the imported chassis. Rolls acquired a factory in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1919 and production of the Silver Ghost at that facility soon followed. Along with Brewster, many other prestigious American coachbuilders created bodies for the 40/50hp under the hallmark of 'Rolls-Royce Custom Coach Work'. Among the list of craftsmen include Willoughby, Holbrook, Merrimac, and Biddle & Smart, who created a range of standard designs allowing customers to purchase Rolls-Royce vehicles 'off the showroom floor.' The list of body styles included the Oxford seven-passenger tourer, Riviera town cars, Piccadilly Roadster, and the Pall Mall tourer. Early examples were very similar to their British counterpart, but over the years, they adopted their own unique style and features. Early component substitutions included American Bosch ignition in place of the Watford magneto, American wheels replacing Dunlops and eventually all electrical equipment was of local manufacture. A Six-volt electrical system was adopted by 1924 and a year later, the chassis was reconfigured for left-hand drive and the four-speed, right-hand-shifted gearbox was replaced by an American-style three-speed with center change.

History
Rolls-Royce's reputation as makers of 'The Best Car in the World' was founded upon the 40/50 hp, introduced in November of 1906 at the London Motor Show. Managing Director Claude Johnson had the company demonstrator model, 'AX 201' - and the first 40/50 hp to be known as the Silver Ghost due to its livery and silver-plated fittings, take part in both the 1907 Scottish Reliability Trial and a RAC scrutinized 15,000 mile endurance run immediately afterwards. The latter ordeal was a series of trips between London and Glasgow no less than 27 times, and upon completion, a thorough post-event examination revealed that the car had suffered no appreciable wear to its engine, gearbox, rear axle or brakes. The only mechanical components that factory mechanics recommended be changed were the fan belt, two front wheel pivot pins, a steering rod tie pin, a steering lever ball tip, a petrol strainer, and a magneto driving joint. The RAC report stated 'Had the car been in the hands of a private owner no replacements would have been considered necessary'.

Chassis Specification
The Rolls-Royce 40/50 hp rested on a large ladder-frame chassis comprised of channel-section side members and tubular cross members. Initially, it had a wheelbase size of 135.5-inches, growing to 143.5-inches in 1913, then to 144- and 150.5-inches from 1923 forwards. It was suspended by semi-elliptic springs at the front and a 'platform' leaf-spring arrangement at the rear, though the latter soon came in for revision. It had powerful rear wheel brakes and spiral-bevel final drive. Stopping power was initially managed via hand-operated rear-wheel brakes and a pedal-operated transmission brake acting on the propellor shaft. In 1913, the 40/50hp was given a footbrake system that operated drums on the rear axle. A decade later, four-wheel servo-assisted brakes became optional; in 1924, they became standard.

Engine Specification
The side-valve, six-cylinder engine displaced 7,036cc and was cast in two units of three cylinders each. It had a seven-bearing crankshaft with full-pressure lubrication, two spark plugs per cylinder, and a trembler coil to produce the spark. A magneto soon became standard and from 1921 forward, buyers had the choice of a magneto or coil ignition. Displacement grew to 7,428cc from 1910, and output increased from 48 bhp at 1,250 RPM to 80 bhp at 2,250 RPM.


The three-speed transmission with direct-drive top gear was replaced by a four-speed/overdrive top unit in 1909. Electric lighting became optional equipment in 1914 and was standardized in 1919, as was electric starting. Prior to electricity, lighting was supplied by oil or acetylene.

Production of the Silver Ghost continued in England until 1925 and at Rolls-Royce's Springfield plant in the USA until 1926, earning the distinction of being the longest production run of any model from this marque.


by Daniel Vaughan | Sep 2022

Related Reading : Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost History

In 1906 a new model, the 4050 horsepower, was developed with a longer chassis and a six-cylinder engine. The popularity of the new Rolls-Royce grew quickly as it developed a reputation for smoothness, silence, flexibility and, above all, reliability. In 1907 a writer from the Autocar described riding in the Rolls-Royce 4050 hp as ....the feeling of being wafted through the countryside. Engineers....
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Related Reading : Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost History

The Rolls-Royce vehicles have always been the pinnacle of design, technology, and ambiance. The loudest noise that could be heard by occupants of their vehicles was said to be the clock. In 1904 engineer Frederick Henry Royce joined with the entrepreneur and businessman, the Honorable Charles Stewart Rolls. This union became known as the Rolls-Royce Company. The Silver Ghost became available in....
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1925 Vehicle Profiles

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Piccadilly Roadster
Coachwork: Merrimac
1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Piccadilly Roadster
Coachwork: Merrimac

Chassis Num: 364RK

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Riviera Town Car
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: 390XH

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Piccadilly Roadster
Coachwork: Merrimac

Chassis Num: S77LK

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Playboy Roadster
Coachwork: Brewster
1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Piccadilly Roadster
Coachwork: Brewster
1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Tourer
Coachwork: Merrimac

Chassis Num: S131MK

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Piccadilly Roadster
Coachwork: Brewster

Chassis Num: S135MK

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
All Weather Tourer
Coachwork: Locke

Chassis Num: S283 PK

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Limousine
Coachwork: Buckingham

Chassis Num: S387RK

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Town Car
Coachwork: Merrimac

Chassis Num: S110MK

1925 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost vehicle information
Salamanca Town Car
Coachwork: Willoughby

Chassis Num: S242PK

Performance and Specification Comparison

Silver Ghost

Year
Production
Wheelbase
Engine
Prices
134.00 in.
6 cyl., 453.28 CID., 50.00hp
134.00 in.
6 cyl., 429.36 CID., 48.00hp
134.00 in., 144.00 in.
6 cyl., 429.36 CID., 48.00hp
$12,000 - $12,000
134.00 in.
6 cyl., 429.36 CID., 48.00hp
143.50 in.
6 cyl., 453.00 CID., 48.00hp
$15,500 - $15,500
144.00 in.
6 cyl., 453.28 CID., 48.00hp
143.50 in., 144.00 in.
6 cyl., 448.46 CID., 40.00hp

Industry Production

#1#2#3Rolls-Royce
1930Ford (1,140,710)Chevrolet (640,980)Buick (181,743)
1929Ford (1,507,132)Chevrolet (1,328,605)Buick (196,104)
1928Chevrolet (1,193,212)Ford (607,592)Willys Knight (231,360)
1927Chevrolet (1,001,820)Ford (367,213)Buick (255,160)
1926Ford (1,669,847)Chevrolet (547,724)Buick (266,753)
1925Ford (1,669,847)Chevrolet (306,479)Dodge (201,000)
1924Ford (1,922,048)Chevrolet (264,868)Dodge (193,861)
1923Ford (1,831,128)Chevrolet (323,182)Buick (210,572)
1922Ford (1,147,028)Chevrolet (243,479)Dodge (152,673)
1921Ford (1,275,618)Chevrolet (130,855)Buick (82,930)
1920Ford (806,040)Chevrolet (146,243)Dodge (141,000)

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