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Rolls Royce Automobiles.

Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by LabelKing, Sep 23, 2008.

  1. Cravate_Noire

    Cravate_Noire Well-Known Member

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    Maybe it's because I'm living in Germany, but the only Mercedes I can think of that would make people turn their heads like a RR would (and the fed. office for protection of the const. as well) is that one: [​IMG] If the RR would come with a valet I would gladly...be chauffeured^^.
     
  2. DF-Beyond-Devil

    DF-Beyond-Devil New Member

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    Rolls royce are one of my fav cars.. but they're extremely expensive
     
  3. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

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    Every cheap Rolls Royce pictured here will be an absolute money pit. It may cost as much as a Honda Civic, but you'd better have twice that amount in your pocket for mechanic fees.
    Yes, the routine maintenance costs are high, and any repair or parts replacement will be astronomical.
     
  4. JetBlast

    JetBlast Well-Known Member

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    Outside of the high miles and gawd awful steering wheel, that car is a major buy for the money. I can't believe it's going for less than $10 grand.

    +1. I'll take the house in the background too.
     
  5. ms244

    ms244 Well-Known Member

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    Every cheap Rolls Royce pictured here will be an absolute money pit. It may cost as much as a Honda Civic, but you'd better have twice that amount in your pocket for mechanic fees.

    Whats the actual maintenance on it look like and is there a source for parts and repair advice?

    I'm guessing electronics are vintage era brit stuff (ie Lucas, pre-Bosch) so that might be an issue.

    Other then that I'm not sure what could go wrong on the car that a set of metric wrenches can't fix. They are all pretty similar under the hood.
     
  6. LabelKing

    LabelKing Well-Known Member

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    One has to wonder whether an old Rolls Royce is really that expensive to maintain. Provided that the example has a fine mechanical service history, I don't see why it has to be any more expensive to maintain than any other period luxury vehicle; Mercedes charges $500+ for a plastic headlamp surround for my car.
     
  7. Full Canvas

    Full Canvas Well-Known Member

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    I'm guessing electronics are vintage era brit stuff (ie Lucas, pre-Bosch) so that might be an issue.

    Many of the electrical parts are actually U.S. Delco (General Motors) and retain the Delco identification (example: electric motors for the power seats). Sourcing these items over the counter at GM or Napa wearhouses can reduce costs significantly. The same holds true for many mechanical ancillary parts.

    Of course, some authorized dealers and independent repair shops already know this. They purchase at Napa and offer the customer a "big discount off Rolls list price" while realizing a very healthy profit.

    ___
     
  8. nicad2000

    nicad2000 Well-Known Member

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    I can imagine the scariest maintenance/replacement expenses being related to the powertrain. Finding someone that can work on those old motors (6.75L ?) would be a hassle and imagine the cost of a replacement transmission...

    On a side note: Wouldn't it be funny if the tranny ended up being GM-sourced as well? I could almost see them doing something like that.
     
  9. ms244

    ms244 Well-Known Member

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    GM stuff is not bad. A turbo400 or turbo700 automatic (and their derivatives) are pretty hard to kill and not a bad choice. BMW used some GM sourced automatics until recently (IIRC). And almost anything is better then the old Lucas electrics. If you can get a set of repair manuals and a cross-reference for the parts I think there is a chance you could up keep one for a relatively minimal cost. ETA from this wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turbo-Hydramatic
    So aside from pulling the tranny out, rebuild costs should be minimal and parts and repair avaliable at almost any normal tranny shop..
     
  10. Full Canvas

    Full Canvas Well-Known Member

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    On a side note: Wouldn't it be funny if the tranny ended up being GM-sourced as well? I could almost see them doing something like that.

    Many of the 70s and 80s Wraiths, Silver Spurs, and Silver Shadows did, in fact, use GM sourced automatic transmissions as well alternators and air conditioning compressors.

    ___
     
  11. nicad2000

    nicad2000 Well-Known Member

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    Damn I'm good...

    I believe that BMW used GM 4-spd. transmissions in at least the '89-'95 5-series. The six cylinder models anyway, not sure about the V8's. Seems like there were some 5-spds mixed in on the 8-cylinder models which I can't see GM sourcing.
     
  12. LabelKing

    LabelKing Well-Known Member

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    I believe Mercedes also used a Chrysler design from the '30s for their first automatic offering in the '60s.

    Given the American origin of many of these Rolls parts, I wonder if these supposedly high maintenance costs are a myth.

    Most of the costs involved in a Rolls Royce seems to be the various adornments and interior. I can't imagine sourcing the leather from the now defunct Connolly would be inexpensive; and all that wood would be a hassle as well.
     
  13. Sprezzatura2010

    Sprezzatura2010 Well-Known Member

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    I have driven the older examples and they are surprisingly agile and fast for such a large and heavy car. The power-steering is superb with the thinnest steering wheel you can imagine.

    I have never driven one, but sometime either shortly before or shortly after Bush I's Gulf War a local RR dealer got it in his head that my dad should buy one and started sending him invites to polo matches with test drive events appended. (Seems to me that if they were really good, they wouldn't have to try to sell them!) I went with him to one, and sat in a few RR and Bentley saloons as Dad drove them. (A Bentley 8, a RR Silver Spur, and a Bentley Turbo R.) I remember thinking that the only thing in any of those cars better than what we pulled up in (a Series-3 XJ6) was the sheepskin carpeting. The engines, in particular, did not sound as refined as the even the smog-choked XK 4.2 inline 6.

    I find it odd that they chose to use a Mercedes as a daily driver as some of the period Mercedes models were about the same price as a new Rolls Royce; the 6.9 was even more expensive.

    A Merc 600 Pullman is a far better car than a Royce, regardless of price. The Merc engines are better than Royce's tractor motors, and I believe the Pullman had a Citroen-designed suspension system.

    Maybe it's because I'm living in Germany, but the only Mercedes I can think of that would make people turn their heads like a RR would (and the fed. office for protection of the const. as well) is that one:
    [​IMG]


    What about a 300SL?

    I can imagine the scariest maintenance/replacement expenses being related to the powertrain. Finding someone that can work on those old motors (6.75L ?) would be a hassle and imagine the cost of a replacement transmission...

    I would imagine that anyone who can work on a small block Chevy or Ford, or a BOP/Rover V8, can handle the Royce motor. It is quite primitive, lacking even overhead camshafts.

    Most of the costs involved in a Rolls Royce seems to be the various adornments and interior. I can't imagine sourcing the leather from the now defunct Connolly would be inexpensive; and all that wood would be a hassle as well.

    The bodywork, which in the pre-VW/BMW cars was hand-beaten, is also very, very expensive to fix.

    I agree that none of the mechanical bits seem special. Between Pep Boys and Moss, it should be covered.

    And Connolly Bros. is dead? How sad.
     
  14. johnapril

    johnapril Well-Known Member

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    For as long as I could remember my maternal grandfather drove Cadillacs exclusively. He traded in his pair of Cadillacs every year for the latest model. Typically one of the vehicles was a convertible, and he always bought them with all the decorative options, like a spare tire in a fancy box fitted to the trunk, or a large chrome angel on the hood, things like that. In a different garage he kept a pair of burgundy Cadillacs from the 1970s that were "the pair" the year his third wife died. He didn't trade that pair in. He kept that pair in that garage as a sort of shrine to the woman. In a separate garage he kept the perpetually updated pair. Then, when I was 16 or 17, he traded in his pair of Cadillacs for a pair of Rolls Royces. They were cream colored and boxier than the Cadillacs I was so accustomed to. One of them was a convertible. I drove the hardtop once. The pedals were mushy. The seats were high. I remember the smell of the leather. I was used to driving large cars, as my first car was a 1973 Chevy Impala, and when I threw a rod on the motor, I got a 1973 Chevy Monte Carlo.

    My grandfather loved his Rolls Royces. He and one of his war buddies sped from St. Louis to Boca Raton in the convertible. The way he told the story, they got the car up to 110 mph, which impressed me, as when I had tried the same with my Impala, the motor threw a rod.
     
  15. LabelKing

    LabelKing Well-Known Member

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    JohnApril,

    A nice anecdote.

    The high seats and the mushy pedals also struck me. The hauteur is unmistakable when driving.

    The apparent strength of these cars--despite their large sizes--is that they can be driven continuously at rather high speeds. This is also the same with Mercedes cars, however old. A lot of modern cars may be able to reach those speeds, but they can't really maintain it for any appreciable stretch.
     
  16. zjpj83

    zjpj83 Well-Known Member

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    They are as reliable as Jaguars of the same period. [​IMG]
     
  17. zjpj83

    zjpj83 Well-Known Member

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    This is true of any vintage car that isn't restored. You are really looking at a money pit unless it gets full attention and/or regular service.

    In my experience, the "cheap" vintage cars are NOT bargains like they appear to be.

    Top Gear, in a somewhat recent episode, presented a challenge to buy a '70s sports car with £10,000 (had to be Italian). Clarkson bought a Maserati Merak, Richard Hammond bought a Ferrari 308 GT4 and James May bought a Lamborghini Urraco. They then had to do various not-so-rigorous tests. In the end, none of the cars was running - they had all died.

    IMO - save your money and get one that is restored and has been properly maintained.
     
  18. Flieger

    Flieger Well-Known Member

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    Have you seen the Topgear episode in which Clarkson and May do tests with their own, classic, cars, in this case a huge mercedes pullman (I think)(owned by Jeremy) and a Bentley (owned by May.)
    The hilarious bit is when they try to park their car in the middle of London.
    Also the slalom and u turn test on the track was hilarious.
    I think the mercedes came out slightly better.
     
  19. zjpj83

    zjpj83 Well-Known Member

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    Have you seen the Topgear episode in which Clarkson and May do tests with their own, classic, cars, in this case a huge mercedes pullman (I think)(owned by Jeremy) and a Bentley (owned by May.)
    The hilarious bit is when they try to park their car in the middle of London.
    Also the slalom and u turn test on the track was hilarious.
    I think the mercedes came out slightly better.



    Yeah, that was great
     
  20. LabelKing

    LabelKing Well-Known Member

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    It seems to me that those '70s era Rolls Royces are simply not expensive even in top condition.
     

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