Automotive Gallery


Typifying the growing economic confidence of the mid 1950s, the Bentley S1 was larger, faster and more boldly styled than its MKVI predecessor. Introduced in 1955, there was nothing average about its 'Standard Steel Saloon' bodywork. A masterclass in formal elegance, it was underpinned by a new cruciform-braced box-section chassis equipped with independent coil-sprung front suspension, a 'live' rear axle and servo-assisted four-wheel drum brakes. Powered by a twin SU carburettor fed 4887cc straight-six engine allied to standard-fit four-speed automatic transmission, the S1 could waft along at over 100mph. Once affectionately described as "a veritable country club on wheels", the model certainly boasted an inviting cabin. Trimmed with the finest hides, carpets and wood veneers, it promised relaxation and contentment.

Finished in Tudor Grey with Red House of Lords Connolly hide upholstery, this particular example is variously described by the vendor as being in "very good" (engine, automatic transmission, electrical equipment), "excellent" (bodywork, paintwork) or "exceptional" (interior trim) condition. Believed but not warranted to have covered some 83,000 miles from new, 'ULX 634' is understood to have spent almost three decades in the UK before being exported to America during 1986. The recipient of a colour change, re-trim and air-conditioning system by the time the current owner acquired it in New Orleans some three years later, the Bentley returned with him to England and was driven regularly up until 1997. Thereafter the luxurious saloon was restored to its factory correct livery with Goudhurst Service Station Ltd (a.k.a. Sargeants of Goudhurst) attending to the bodywork, Healey Bros fitting the vendor-sourced House of Lords Connolly leather upholstery and J. Crabtree, Veneer Restorers re-finishing the cabin woodwork. Said to have been regularly maintained by Goudhurst Service Station Ltd and the seller's own mechanic, 'ULX 634' boasts such niceties as an under-dashboard cocktail cabinet (complete with glasses), air-conditioning, power steering and its original tools. Riding on correct-type steel wheels shod with fresh Avon tyres, this handsome Bentley is offered for sale with copy factory build sheet, various old MOTs, restoration invoices / receipts and MOT certificate valid until April 2011

Image and description kindly supplied by H&H Classic Auctions

Bentley S1 1957 Saloon

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