Vintage Rolls-Royce with a touch of infamy in its history to be auctioned in Melbourne.
February 17, 2007. Punters will get a chance to buy a car with a roundabout link to the history of Nazi Germany at the Melbourne motor show auction next month.
Among items listed for the Shannons auction is a 1927 Rolls-Royce nicknamed The Princess after her owner who found infamy as a spy for Adolf Hitler.
The Phantom I Saloon was originally delivered with Cabriolet de Ville coachwork by Barker to a London woman in 1927, but in 1929 passed into the hands of Austrian Princess Stephanie Hohenlohe de Waldenbern, a royal by marriage.
Although Jewish, she was said to be a close friend of many high-ranking Nazis of the time, including Joachim von Ribbentrop and Hermann Goering. Nazi dictator Hitler called her his “dear princess.”
British intelligence files alleged she later became a spy for Germany, and the US Government described her as “more dangerous than 10,000 men.”
By then the Rolls-Royce with its 7.6-litre inline six-cylinder engine and three-speed manual gearbox had been sold to an Australian, and had been rebodied as a saloon by Martin & King.
It had several other owners before settling in Queensland for some years.
The Phantom today retains its period black and maroon Martin & King coachwork with burgundy leather and beige cloth interior.
Other touches include the period flower vase and the metal trunk on sliding rails, plus a set of tools.
The car is fitted with 20-inch Rudge-Whitworth wheels and comes with both the Flying Lady mascot and town cap.
Shannons expects it to sell in the $Au75,000-$90,000 range at the March 12 auction.