The 1946-1959 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith was the custom-bodied Rolls-Royce series in the postwar years, continuing a famous name of the 1930’s. Rolls-Royce built the chassis, essentially a stretched-wheelbase version (127 or 133 inches) of the contemporary 120-inch Silver Dawn/Bentley Mark VI platform, with the same suspension design and drivetrains.
Bodywork for the Silver Wraith was supplied by traditional Rolls-Royce specialists -- Park Ward, H.J. Mulliner, Hooper, and others -- most with wood framing and light-alloy or steel panels. Many Wraith’s had "classic" lines, with freestanding headlamps, separate front fenders, division window between passengers and chauffeur, and the characteristic Rolls-Royce "parthenon" grille.
Complete luxury equipment was expected, and interiors were decked out with leather upholstery, wood trim, and, in a few cases, cut-glass ornaments. Displacement of Rolls-Royce's F-head six was increased to 4.5 liters in 1951, then 4.9 liters in 1955; otherwise, few mechanical changes were seen in these years.
In this era there was no doubt: these were "The Best Cars in the World."
Pluses of the 1946-1959 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith:
- Classic status through 1948
- Handcrafted bodies, individual detailing
- Milestone status for all years
- Opulence on a grand scale
- Superb workmanship
- Unbeatable Rolls-Royce cachet and exclusivity
Minuses of the 1946-1959 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith:
- Body parts extinct
- Limited performance
- Now very costly to buy, restore, and own
- Ponderous to drive
Production of the 1946-1959 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith:
- 127-inch wheelbase: 1,144
- 133-inch wheelbase: 639
Specifications of the 1946-1959
Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith:
Wheelbase, inches: 127.0/133.0
Length, inches: 200.0-206.0
Weight, pounds: 4,735-5,405
Price, new: NA
Engines for the 1946-1959 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith:
|Type||Size ||Horsepower||Years |
|F I-6||4,257 cc (260 cid)||NA*||1947-1951|
|F I-6||4,566 cc (279 cid)||NA*||1951-1955|
|F I-6||4,87 cc (298 cid)||NA*||1955-1959|
*Rolls-Royce customarily did not quote power or torque output
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