Bentley S2 Continental Drophead Coupe

A cousin of the Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud II, the Bentley S2 was introduced at the 1959 London Motor Show. While the S2 retained the basic body and chassis of its predecessor, the six-cylinder F-head engine of the S1 was replaced by an all-new overhead-valve V-8 design with an aluminium block and cylinder heads. Rolls-Royce had long avoided official publication of its engines’ horsepower ratings, but the new V-8 was estimated to develop some 200 bhp.

Due to its lighter weight and higher output, the new V-8 easily made both the S2 and the Silver Cloud II considerably quicker in acceleration than their immediate predecessors. The new V-8 provided strong performance when coupled with the standard four-speed automatic gearbox and such power accessories as air conditioning and power steering. Production of the S2 commenced in late 1959 and continued into 1962, when it was succeeded by the S3.

As a sportier variant of the S2, the Continental offered lighter-weight coachbuilt bodies, upgraded drum brakes and a higher rear-axle ratio perfectly suited to high-speed motorways. With a top speed approaching 120 mph, Continentals were consistently faster than the standard production cars, in keeping with Bentley tradition. They were also rarer, with just 388 S2 Continentals ultimately produced.

This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in October of 2010 at the Battersea Evolution, London.

200 bhp, 6,230 cc overhead-valve alloy V-8 engine, four-speed automatic gearbox, independent front suspension with unequal-length A-arms, coil springs and anti-roll torsion bar, rigid rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, single radius rod and electrically-controlled shock absorbers, and hydraulic front, mechanical rear servo-assisted brakes. Wheelbase: 123"

Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Benson Chiu

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