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John Dickinson
New User
Username: au2018

Post Number: 3
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Monday, 24 May, 2004 - 23:06:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Hello to all members of RROCA Forum.

Iím only new to the world of Rolls-Royce myself, a recently accepted Associate member of the RROCA (NSW chapter) where the ink on my membership application is barely dry. Iím wondering if someone may be able to assist me in identifying a modification to a Rolls-Royce state motor car that has me puzzled. Last night I was watching a telecast of the Spanish Royal Wedding, which took place on Saturday 22nd May, depicting the newly married couple being conveyed in one of the Rolls-Royce state cars currently used by the Spanish royal family. Please excuse my amateurish identification of the model, where I think it may have been a Phantom IV.

Now to the question; there was a modification to the Rolls-Royce that has me utterly intrigued. The boot-lid (trunk-lid to our American friends) had a series of horizontal slots in a pattern down the external surface, as if modified to supply air circulation for something within the boot area. Is anyone familiar with this modification to state vehicles? Iíd love to know what itís for and thank anyone for their assistance.}}}
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John Dare
Unregistered guest
Posted From: 144.138.194.165
Posted on Tuesday, 25 May, 2004 - 07:26:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Welcome to the club John; Your first question is indeed a challenging one and I confess to not knowing the answer,however someone will know and report in due course. A you may be aware, Spain are long established buyers of R-R, with General Franco owning many examples during his presidency. Thank you for your interest.
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Bill Coburn
Grand Master
Username: bill_coburn

Post Number: 154
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Tuesday, 25 May, 2004 - 08:51:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

I too was intrigued with the car which I guessed must have been a Phantom IV. I haven't got a reference on these cars but I understood the Queen is the only original owner of that model and she has two still in the Royal Mews. As to the boot lid I suspect it is a modification to cope with air conditioning. Shadows with boot units had intakes at the base of the rear window similar to the front end which gave them fresh air for cooling. Similar units on Silver Wraiths/Clouds etc simply re-circulated the air in the car. Noting the use of postillions on the magnificent horsedrawn carriage used for the Danish event, perhaps the Spanish not to be outdone put theirs in the boot making provision for ventilation!
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John Dare
Unregistered guest
Posted From: 144.138.194.180
Posted on Tuesday, 25 May, 2004 - 15:14:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Thank you Bill for your sensible and entirely plausible explanation for the boot (trunk) air vents. Earlier today I had some comedian suggest that Christopher Skase is alive and well and that Spanish authorities move him around (villa to villa)in the rear of the Phantom,or whatever it is. Still, nothing would suprise me any more.
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Bill Coburn
Grand Master
Username: bill_coburn

Post Number: 155
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Tuesday, 25 May, 2004 - 18:22:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Just found the P IV register Franco did indeed own three of the cars - probably sold them to the King . They are 1952 chassis with a wheelbase an inch longer than the last Phantom VI.
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John Dickinson
New User
Username: au2018

Post Number: 4
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Thursday, 27 May, 2004 - 08:26:   Edit PostDelete PostView Post/Check IP

Thank you John and Bill for your assistance and most plausible suggestions. I suppose, considering the climate a state car may be expected to operate in whilst used for royal functions throughout Spain, it's understandable that an auxiliary air-conditioning unit makes sense.

I've heard from another source that the Spanish royal family did acquire part of their Rolls-Royce fleet from Franco's stables. The vehicles were of particularly low mileage as Franco usually had them shipped by rail to required destinations.