1954 Bentley R-Type - the Pearl & Dean car

Mileage: 103000

Transmission: 4-Speed Automatic

Chassis Number: B148UM

Engine Number: B199U

1954 Bentley R-type – with removable division by Harold Radford – at present removed, believed 5 were supplied to include this accessory.

Chassis B148UM

Engine B199U


Registered 20th January 1954

Click on any photo to start a slide show

Paint work was originally  Midnight Blue, then Dark Grey and now finished in Dark Green over Light Green Metallic with Red coach lines and red leather upholstery, with fitted sliding sunroof.

Purchased in September 2008 with a registered 97,000 miles showing by the late Mr John Dean of Pearl & Dean cinema advertising fame, followers will be sure to recognise each start to a cinema outing with this intro jingle :


Just 2323 R-type Bentleys were made from 1952 until 1955, the larger 4566cc engined new model over the outgoing MkVI having a larger boot, with the later cars such as this 1954 example coming with the now standardised Rolls-Royce / General Motors Hydramatic 4-speed automatic transmission, replacing the MkVI Bentley, and supplied as standard on the subsequent Bentley S1 model of 1955/9

Effectively the first Bentley to comfortably break the 100mph barrier at 102.3 mph, along with the Continental R’s top speed of 116.5 mph - also introduced in 1952 – the twin-SU R-type had a higher compression ratio to the previous MkVI, both sharing the same 10’ wheelbase, the overall length of the R-type 7 ½” longer at 16’ 7 ½” and the final drive being slightly higher for relaxed cruising at 3.47:1 to the MkVI’s 3.73:1 final drive.

Recent invoices include a £1308 ‘service as necessary’ and at 98,098 miles and an £835 brake servo service – both by long-established Rolls-Royce & Bentley specialists Sargents of Goudhurst at Goudhurst Service Station in Kent at 99,466 miles, just 3400 miles ago.

The dynamo has just been completely rebuilt (March 2020) at a cost of £300

Included in the sale is the original buff log book. Of the 4 first owners, three addresses still exist on Google. The first registered owner on 20th March 1954 was a Mrs Lucy Lyons of Alwoodley, Leeds, followed by another lady owner three years later in 1957 - a Mrs Diana Hope Ross Spicer of Colemore House, Alton, Hants, now a national garden open to the public.  In 1960 this car transferred to a Percy Trower of Guildford. Next owner was a Major Cyril Herbert Nathan, listed at a large estate at Prestwick House, Chiddingfold, Surrey - interestingly listed today a historic motor car storage facility. More recent owners include a Bruce Percival Warburton of Lifton, Devon in 1973 and subsequently a David John Lawson of Chobham in 1989.

Original registration SUB 2 in 1954, this car was re-registered at the first change of ownership in 1957 to TYV 806

Today the odometer reads 02909 miles, having only recently turned over from 99,999 miles. A pile of old MOTs in sequential order relate to 67,163 miles recorded at the MOT dated 26th April 1969.

Child seat belts to rear are fitted

A Motorola push-button 3-channel radio is fitted, together with the usual folding centrally mounted roof aerial operated from just above the rearview mirror.

General condition is commensurate with the asking price, that is to say the following items could be attended to if the new owner desires, but not urgent at this stage. The original leather upholstery is split in two places, but the original patina of this car is not unduly harmed by this. The boot lid could would benefit from a repaint where bubbling. Lastly there is the beginning of a crack to the paintwork just under the red coach lines just in front of the driver’s door and to the rear of the bonnet.

Doors shut with a reassuring clunk of a railway carriage door and the car performs well, and as the current owner states, he would be prepared to drive it anywhere. All walnut veneer woodwork is also in good condition. Lastly new five 16” radial tyres will come with this car. The sale has come about due to the owner’s decision to retire from driving.

I look forward to your enquiry



Call 07973 731508