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1962 Bentley S3 Continental cabriolet Park Ward For Sale by Auction

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  • Auction Estimate
  • 1962
Message the seller
Price Auction Estimate
Ad Type For Sale by Auction
Category Classic Cars
Make Bentley
Model S3
  S3 Continental cabriolet
Year 1962
Country France
Region International
Telephone +33 1 42 99 20 73
Status Trade
Date 02-Jul-2020
Ref C1241519
1962 Bentley S3 Continental cabriolet Park Ward
Titre de circulation belge
Châssis n° BC8LXA


Belgian title
Chassis no. BC8LXA

- Bought new by Eddie Fisher and Elizabeth Taylor
- One of the 26 LHD convertibles
- High-quality restoration

One of the most notable characteristics of this car is that it was bought new by Eddie Fisher, who was married at the time to Elizabeth Taylor! It is easy to imagine this impossibly glamorous couple cruising the streets of Los Angeles and, especially, Las Vegas, between the casinos sparking away in the starlit night. Fisher was an extremely popular actor and singer who had sold millions of records, and Elizabeth Taylor turned the hearts of everyone who met her. The talented actress had married Fisher after the death of her previous husband, Michael Wilding, and left him in 1964 for Richard Burton, whom she married twice. Criticizing Fisher for spending his time at the casino, she asked him to buy a ranch to keep her busy when he was away.
Of the total of 312 Bentley S3 Continentals built, there were only 26 left-hand drive drophead coupés like the one we are presenting. After being shipped from London to San Francisco, it was delivered new in Las Vegas in October 1962. Fitted with a large number of factory options, including an electric hood and windows, as well as tinted glass, it was finished at the time in "Porcelain White" with a blue hood and matching interior. Having spent most of its life on the West Coast of the United States and in Nevada, it has benefited from the very dry climate, which has helped preserve it.

In June 2009, this magnificent convertible returned to Europe and was bought by M. A. Oet. It was then restored to a very high standard in the UK. Its next owner, a major Belgian collector, including a Porsche 917 in his collection, who had the car regularly maintained by Bentley Bourgoo at Knokke-le-Zoute. The car was purchased by its current owner in 2017.
The S3 Continental followed in the tradition of the first Continental R from 1952, the fastest four-seat coupé in the world, which had a top speed of 190 kph. With the changes that followed, the model lost some of its sportiness but none of its exclusivity. Its performance remained exceptional for the period, and the S3 saw the introduction of a 6.2-litre V8 providing greater flexibility, power and driving comfort. Power steering and a four-speed automatic transmission made the car easier to drive. The rarest versions are those with bodywork by Park Ward and the very distinctive style of this car, with its four slanted headlamps, known as "Chinese Eyes", adds to its appeal.
In impeccable condition and offering exceptional luxury and comfort, it will be supplied with a folder of invoices, its books and tools.



Photos © Dirk de Jager

Estimation 275 000 - 375 000 €

- Achetée neuve par Eddie Fisher et Elizabeth Taylor
- Un des 26 cabriolets conduite à gauche
- Restauration de très haut niveau

Une des caractéristiques les plus marquantes de cette voiture, c'est qu'elle a été achetée neuve par Eddie Fisher à l'époque où il était marié à Elizabeth Taylor ! Il est facile d'imaginer ce couple follement "glamour" en train de rouler tranquillement dans les rues de Los Angeles et surtout de Las Vegas, entre les casinos brillant de tous leurs feux dans la nuit étoilée. Fisher était un acteur et chanteur extrêmement populaire, qui a vendu des millions de disques, et Elizabeth Taylor faisait tourner les cœurs de tous ceux qu'elle croisait. Cette talentueuse actrice avait épousé Fisher après le décès de son précédent mari, Michael Wilding, et elle l'a quitté en 1964 pour Richard Burton avec qui elle a été mariée deux fois. Elle reprochait à Fisher de passer son temps au Casino aussi elle lui demanda de lui acheter un Ranch afin de pouvoir s'occuper en son absence.
Sur un total de 312 Bentley S3 Continental produites, on ne compte que 26 cabriolets à conduite à gauche comme celui que nous présentons. Après avoir été expédié par bateau de Londres à San Francisco, il a été livré neuf à Las Vegas en octobre 1962. Doté d'un grand nombre d'options d'usine, comme une capote électrique, des vitres électriques et des vitres teintées, il était alors de teinte "Porcelain White", avec capote bleue et intérieur assorti. Ayant passé le plus clair de son existence sur la Côte Ouest des États-Unis et dans le Nevada, il a bénéficié d'un climat très sec qui en a favorisé la préservation.

En juin 2009, ce splendide cabriolet est revenu en Europe, acheté par M. A. Oet, il a alors bénéficié d'une restauration de très grande qualité en Grande-Bretagne. Son propriétaire suivant, un très grand collectionneur Belge, dont la collection compte une Porsche 917, a assuré l'entretien régulier de la voiture chez Bentley Bourgoo, à Knokke-le-Zoute. C'est en 2017 que cette voiture a été achetée par son propriétaire actuel.
La S3 Continental était dans la lignée de la première Continental R de 1952, coupé quatre places le plus rapide du monde, capable d'atteindre 190 km/h. Avec les évolutions qui ont suivi, le modèle est devenu un peu moins sportif mais n'a rien perdu de son exclusivité. Ses performances sont restées exceptionnelles pour son époque et, avec la S3, est apparu un V8 de 6,2 litres apportant plus de souplesse, d'agrément et de puissance. La conduite était facilitée par une assistance de direction, la transmission étant automatique, à quatre rapports. Les versions les plus rares sont celles carrossées par Park Ward et le style très particulier de la présente voiture, avec ses quatre phares obliques justifiant son surnom de "chinese eye", en augmente l'attrait.
En état impeccable, offrant un luxe et un confort hors du commun, elle est livrée avec un dossier de factures, ses carnets et ses outils.



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