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Driving a 'Chinese' Silver Cloud

1965 rolls_royce_silver_cloud_III_joris_bergsma_470

Two weeks ago we were invited at the 50th birthday of carjournalist and photographer Marius Hille Ris Lambers. Very kind, especially when he added that he needed a driver for the 1965 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud III as on the menu of the afternoon was a short drive-out. The first and last time when we drove a Rolls was a 20/25 Saloon somewhere between Beijing and Shanghai.  This was during the 2015 Classic Car Challenge China. So we were pleasantly surprised (no tricks here) that this Silver Cloud actually did the same rally in 2016 (the door stickers still on). So now we feel we are sort of a Chinese Rolls Royce connaisseur.

Next time we will try the 'chinese eyes' fixed head coupe that was present on the same occasion. Maybe even with the 2017 Beijing to Shanghai for which the brochure is available online.
We got on board of the mighty LWB with devision with ample room for four passengers. After a little warm up the brakes lost their funny noises, the auto transmission started behaving and the engine became quiet as it should be. We didn't use the division window as some escaping exhaust fumes of the 6,2 litre V8 would have made life in the rearseat impossible. The LWB over two ton automobile may seem a big lump to handle, but the best car in the world gives the feeling you don't need to worry about all that. The large thin steering wheel has a strong power assist but gives a very clear feel of the road and we had no problem whatsoever to guide the majestic limousine along narrow misty country roads and little roundabouts.

Less enthousiasm for the pre- ergonomy dashboard. Even worse than any pre-war arrangement. While driving in dark and mist and not really used to the car your sribe was in a continuous struggle to find wipers, lights and more in the mahogany field of controls. It may have been the age of the car - slightly older than Marius - but the heating and the defogging arrangement of the car only made noises but didn't produce any of the promised effects. Well at least it brought back vivid memories to most of the cars of that era we ever owned. 
Yet not one of those had the sovereign power of this British V8 that would take off effortlessly at any speed with the two tons of metal and five inhabitants. As the manufacturers used to say and write regarding engine output: "sufficient". One of the better old time understatements that fits a Rolls. Or at least this Silver Cloud III with Chinese experience.
Photos courtesy OneStop Photo. Special thanks for making available the car Hooper International
text by Joris Bergsma

Tuesday, 03 January 2017

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Racing on the rocks

Racing on the rocks
We love a bit of motor sport here and have found memories of driving on frozen lakes in Switzerland and Scandinavia. When you look at historical images of the ice racing in Sweden the amount of Specials is striking, with every Olle, Malte or Ivar seemingly coming up with a car of their own design. One that really struck us was the ‘Nobe V8 Special’ constructed by a man named Gustav Nobelius. In fact his Nobe Special was based upon the earlier GB1 Special from Norway (story here) but we fell for the looks that Nobelius gave it. The V8 designation does indeed point towards eight cylinders, so this must have been quite a beast to drive. And how about those cast spike wheels without tyres? We alsolike  the looks of the man himself, reminding us of the late great Terry Thomas in Monte Carlo or Bust. Speaking about ice racing

(Words editor, picture courtesy

Monday, 02 January 2017

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A toast to 2017

A toast to 2017
Had a good night?

We do not know where the delivery van pictured above could be seen when the last minutes of 2016 ticked away, but we trust it to have been a grand venue. If we are ever going to throw a big new year’s party – this is the car to join in with the celebrations. It’s the only remaining Silver Shadow shooting brake commissioned for Champagne house Krug, used for delivering its prestigious bubbles to customers. Three of these cars were built for them in the mid-1980s to serve the European, US and Japanese markets, with just the European car seen here surviving.

Now, for 2017, we have some important changes to make on both as It’s great news, but we can’t say much more for now – just keep an eye on these pages and you’ll find out soon enough. For now, we want to wish you all the very best for 2017. Happy new year!

(Words editor, picture courtesy Krug / Thierry des Ouches)

Sunday, 01 January 2017

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Postwar X-mas Puzzle day 6

Seen here with just a glimpse of the automobile he designed is an American multi-talented athlete, inventor and entrepreneur. He was born in 1897 and at the age of 19 he designed a simple automatic gearshift, which unfortunately was never put into production. With a friend he went to Europe to set up a company that designed car bodies. He became quite successful. After World War II, in 1954, he sold one of his designs to an American company that was started after World War II by a very successful shipbuilder. The fiberglass car incorporated sliding doors that our inventor designed way back in 1922. The name of the shipbuilder and the name of the designer form together the name of the make and model we want to hear from you.

You can now send in your answers of today and the previous five days, but do so BEFORE Tuesday, January 3 2017. PLEASE click the “Add new comment’ box and tell us the six makes. From the participants with all answers correct, six names will be drawn at random. The solution to the puzzle will be published on Saturday, January 7. All six winners will receive the famous PostWarClassic T-shirt. Good luck and we hope you enjoyed this holiday season!

Saturday, 31 December 2016

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