Best in the World
Only one 40/50 Rolls-Royce is strictly known as “The Silver Ghost”— AX201, built in 1906, works demonstrator and heroine of the RAC 15,000-Mile Trial of 1907. Its special finish and name successfully promoted the model to Press and public.
Announced at the 1906 Motor Show, this was the model which earned the title “Best Car in the World” between 1907 and 1925, by which time 6173 cars had been built.
Particularly desirable is the London-Edinburgh type, so-named in commemoration of the 1911 top-gear run between those capitals; that car later reached 101mph at Brooklands, fitted with a streamlined body. It has since been restored by Kenneth Neve to its original fast tourer form.
Only minor mechanical changes were made to the 40/50 chassis over the years, but body styles of course reflected the progress of fashion — witness the 1920 tourer, youngest of the Ghosts shown here.
Foremost amongst many celebrations in this 80th year of the Ghost will be Rolls Royce EC Silver Ghost Day at Courteenhall, near Northampton, on Saturday June 20. GC