Rolls-Royce 20 Limousine

The new 20 hp Rolls-Royce, sometimes called the “Baby Rolls,” arrived in October 1922. Distinguished from its older and larger Silver Ghost sibling by a monoblock engine with overhead valves, it also had a detachable cylinder head and coil-and-battery ignition. Initially built with a three-speed centre-change gearbox, it was modified for the more conventional four-speed with right-hand shift in 1925. Although smaller and less expensive than the Ghost and Phantom models, the Twenty received coachwork from many of the same bespoke builders.

A good many of these came from Barker. Founded in the 18th century, Barker had entered the automobile era as Barker & Co. Ltd. in 1900. In 1905, C.S. Rolls took a liking to their work and announced that all his cars would be fitted with Barker bodywork. Thus Barker became the more-or-less “official” coachbuilder, although customers could send their chassis to others if they wished.

This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in May of 2010 at the Grimaldi Forum, Monaco.

53 bhp, 3,127 cc overhead-valve inline six-cylinder engine, four-speed manual gearbox, solid front axle and live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel servo-assisted brakes. Wheelbase: 3,277 mm (129")

Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Tom Wood

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