Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud

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Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud
1964 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud (North America)
ManufacturerRolls-Royce Ltd
Production1955–1966
7,372 produced
AssemblyCrewe, England
PredecessorSilver Dawn
SuccessorSilver Shadow
LayoutFR layout
Engine(s)4.9 L I6
6.2 L Rolls-Royce V8
Transmission(s)4-speed automatic

The Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud was the core model of the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars range from April 1955 until March 1966. It replaced the Silver Dawn and was, in turn, replaced by the Silver Shadow.

As part of a range rationalisation it is very similar, apart from the radiator, to the Bentley S1.

The design was a major change from the pre-war models and the highly derivative Silver Dawn. The main design work was by J. P. Blatchley.

Silver Cloud I

Silver Cloud I
1959 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud
Production1955-1958
Body style(s)4-door saloon
Engine(s)4.9 L I6
Wheelbase123 in (3124.2 mm) (short wheel base) [1]
Length212 in (5384.8 mm) [1]
Width74.75 in (1898.7 mm) [1]
Height64 in (1625.6 mm) [1]
RelatedBentley S1


The chassis was a simple steel box section, welded together and very rigid. Construction was still split into chassis and pressed steel and aluminium coachwork (unibody construction did not arrive until the Silver Shadow). The car was 5.38 m (212 in) long, 1.90 m (75 in) wide, and massed 1.95 tonnes. The engine was a 155 hp / 4000 rpm 4.9 L six-cylinder unit with inlet over exhaust valves, twin SU carburettors, the transmission a four-speed automatic. Brakes were hydraulic and assisted by the Rolls-Royce mechanical servo with 11 in (279.4 mm) drums and suspension was independent coils at the front and semi-elliptic springs at the rear. Power steering became an option in 1956 along with air conditioning.

A long wheel base version, lengthened by 4 in (101.6 mm), was also made.

The British Motor magazine tested a standard wheel base factory bodied Series I in 1956 recording a top speed of 102.9 mph (165.6 km/h) and acceleration from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 13.5 seconds and a fuel consumption of 14.5 miles per imperial gallon (19.5 L/100 km; 12.1 mpg-US). The test car cost £5078 including taxes. [1]

Silver Cloud II

Silver Cloud II
1961 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud (North America)
Production1959-1962
Body style(s)4-door saloon
2-door convertible
2-door coupé
Engine(s)6.2 L Rolls-Royce V8
Wheelbase123 in (3124.2 mm) (short wheel base) [1]
Length213 in (5410.2 mm) [2]
Width74.75 in (1898.7 mm) [2]
Height64 in (1625.6 mm) [2]
RelatedBentley S2

The Silver Cloud II was introduced in 1959. Little changed externally but it now had a 6.2 L V8 engine, which pushed the weight to 2.11 tonnes. Performance was greatly improved and top speed was raised to 183 km/h (114 mph), but the main improvements were in acceleration and torque. Power steering became standard. Electrically operated windows were now available as an option

The Motor magazine tested a Series II in 1960. They recorded a top speed of 104.7 mph (168.5 km/h), acceleration from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 10.9 seconds and a fuel consumption of 13 miles per imperial gallon (22 L/100 km; 11 mpg-US). The test car cost £6092 including taxes. [2]

Silver Cloud III

Silver Cloud III
1964 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud (North America)
Production1963-1966
Body style(s)4-door saloon
2-door convertible
2-door coupé
Engine(s)6.2 L Rolls-Royce V8
RelatedBentley S3

The Silver Cloud III arrived in 1963. External dimensions were slightly tweaked, the interior remodelled, the weight reduced by a little over 100 kg (220 lb) and improvements to the engine boosted speed and performance slightly. The headlights were changed to a four-headlamp layout remarkably similar to that of the later Silver Shadow, a model which the company had been brainstorming since the late-1950s. Official Rolls-Royce documents indeed state the four-headlamp layout was introduced to prepare customers for the radically new, then-forthcoming Shadow.

A notable (but not particularly favoured among classic car circles) version of the Silver Cloud III is the "Chinese Eye", featured on the Mulliner Park Ward coachbuilt cars, of which only about 100 were made, including one drop-head coupé that was owned by Peter Sellers for four years, and another by Lucille Ball, among others.

Production

  • Silver Cloud: 2,238
  • Silver Cloud Long Wheelbase: 85
  • Silver Cloud special coachbuilder styles (convertibles, hearses, etc): 121
  • Silver Cloud II: 2,417
  • Silver Cloud II Long Wheelbase: 258
  • Silver Cloud II coachbuilder styles (convertibles, hearses, etc): 107
  • Sliver Cloud III: 2,044
  • Silver Cloud III Long Wheelbase: 206
  • Silver Cloud III coachbuilder styles (convertibles, hearses, etc): 328

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 "The Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud". The Motor. January 18, 1956. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "The Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud II". The Motor. May 18, 1960. 

External links