He did not have a driver's license when he bought it.
This dusty and rusty Bentley S2 was first registered back in March 1960 before switching owners ten years later when Sir Ray Davies of The Kinks bought it after "Lola" went straight to number 1. But since he did not have a driver’s license at that time, his then-wife drove it, including for a family holiday to Cornwall. It was in this car the rock legend wrote the famous song “Apeman” during his stay in Mullion using his Spanish guitar while sitting in the back seat.
Not only that, but the Bentley S2 also took part in a photo shoot for the band’s “Preservation” album and there are still a handful of black and white images of the members posing as gangsters in front of the Konk recording studio in London.
During the 1970s, Sir Ray Davies took the car with him when he moved to Surrey, but he still did not have a driver’s license at that time. The Bentley S2 was taken out from time to time for family outings, weddings, and special events before the band took it on the road in a U.K. tour. However, The Kinks’ then-manager decided to put the car into a garage after fans started writing messages on it using lipstick.
It has been collecting dust since 1991, so it goes without saying the 6.2-liter V8-powered Bentley fitted with a four-speed automatic transmission needs to be restored to its former glory. It has covered 61,756 miles (99,386 kilometers) and is in need of a thorough refresh both inside and out.
Silverstone Auctions will have the 1960 Bentley S2 for sale on May 13rd at the Silverstone track and estimates it will fetch anywhere between £25,000 and £30,000 (about $32,300 and $38,700). It’s not every day you get the chance to buy a car straight from a rock legend, and with around 2,000 units made during the model’s production run between 1959 and 1962, it’s also quite rare.
Source: Silverstone Auctions
1960 Bentley S2 owned by Sir Ray Davies of The Kinks
OWNED BY A WELL RESPECTED MAN- SIR RAY DAVIES’ BENTLEY FOR AUCTION
- First registered on the 2nd March 1960, this Bentley S2 was purchased in 1970 by Sir Ray Davies of The Kinks.
- Sir Ray wrote the single Apeman in the back of the car and it was used in a photo shoot for the Preservation album.
- Offered at auction from long-term storage since 1991, the car is estimated to sell for between £25,000 and £30,000.
A 1960 Bentley S2, owned by legendary rhythm guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter for The Kinks, Sir Ray Davies, will go under the hammer at Silverstone Auctions’ May Sale, taking place at Silverstone circuit on 13th May.
The car was bought by Sir Ray in 1970 after the Kinks’ single Lola went to Number 1 in the charts around the world. He was persuaded by his family to invest in a big car, unusual for him as he didn’t actually drive at the time, in fact he didn’t start driving until he was 44 years old!
“I succumbed to the pressure and purchased a second hand Bentley from Hadleigh Green Garage in Barnet. My then wife drove it on my behalf because I was unable to drive at the time,” said Sir Ray.
“We lived in a little semi in Muswell Hill and the neighbours were in shock and awe when they saw this huge black Bentley drive up along the narrow shingle path to the house. We subsequently went on holiday in the Bentley to Cornwall, an exotic spot in England which was our family outing with my two daughters in the back with their buckets and spades.”
It was also in this very car that Sir Ray wrote the next single after the hit Lola as he explains: “While on our holiday in Mullion in Cornwall I sat in the back seat of the Bentley and wrote a follow up to Lola called Apeman on a Spanish guitar which I carried in the back.”
Not only that but The Kinks used the car in a photo shoot for the Preservation album and it still exists in some old black and white footage of the band posing as gangsters outside KONK studios in London. It was even used occasionally as a tour bus by the band.
“When I moved to Surrey in the 70s the car came down with me, I still could not drive, I had never driven the car which gives it some element of Kudos. It was occasionally taken out for special events like weddings and family outings. The Kinks took it once on the road in England but the fans started writing on the car with lipstick and our then manager Ken Jones promptly retired my car to the garage," added Sir Ray.
The Bentley has been in long-term storage since 1991 and now requires some restoration work. It is offered for auction direct from the ownership of Sir Ray, estimated at between £25,000 and £30,000.
Commenting on the sale of the car, classic car specialist at Silverstone Auctions, Arwel Richards, said: “It is rare to auction a car direct from rock royalty and this Bentley offers an incredible opportunity for rock ‘n’ roll fans and Bentley aficionados alike. At Silverstone Auctions we pride ourselves on offering unique and highly collectible cars like this for public sale.”