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Handmade Rolls Royce

Popular Princess Alexandra, the first cousin of Queen Elizabeth II of Britain, ordered the limousine for her official use in 1971. The limousine was the pinnacle of luxury vehicles of that time and the latest generation of classic limousines. She ordered the unique Rolls Royce Phantom VI.

Handmade limousine

The vehicle was manufactured for two years, since such limousines used to be handmade according to the client’s specifications. The Rolls Royce factory supplied the vehicle chassis in 1971, after which the company H.J. Mulliner – Park Ward created the vehicle bodywork and interior as desired by its owner. The bodywork was handmade for two years, hence the car was first registered in 1973. Interestingly, Princess Alexandra had a radio and tape recorder with a dictating machine built in the place where a bar is usually found in the passenger cabin, so that she could work while on the road. The car has another special feature; since it was delivered to a member of the royal family for her official duties, it is one of very few Rolls Royce models with a blue light built in and a system for the coat of arms or a flag on the roof. The Rolls Royce Phantom VI is also not a very common car, since only 374 such limousines were made between 1968 and 1992. Two of them are still owned and used by Queen Elizabeth. The Phantom VI is a large limousine exceeding 6 metres in length. It is powered by a V8 engine with 6,230cc. It is also famous for the official manufacturer’s answer to the question about the engine horsepower, which was “Enough”.

In the hands of the finest craftsmen

Princess Alexandra used the unique Rolls Royce until 1996. During the following two decades, the limousine was regularly and well maintained. In 2018, the second owner put it up for auction in Goodwood. It was bought at that auction by the owner of the Russian Dacha.

However, the Rolls Royce did not go straight to Slovenia in 2018. It was taken to Salzburg, which hosts one of the best repair shops for English old-timers. It is managed by Johannes Vonier, who comes from a family dedicated to cars. His father, Franz Vonier, created the biggest collection of Rolls Royce vehicles in the world that is presented at the family museum in Dornbirn. In summer, the Vonier family will open their second collection to public – airplanes powered by Rolls Royce engines. Since their father’s death, the museums and repair shops are managed together by his sons Bernhard and Johannes.

The Salzburg workshop is equipped for comprehensive restoration of old vehicles. It even has its own traditional harness workshop, where leather seat covers and interior door panels of classic limousines are handmade. The Russian Dacha Rolls Royce turned out to be extremely well maintained, hence no replacement was necessary in its rich interior lined with walnut root, requiring merely careful cleaning and polishing. The engine was examined in detail. Only pipelines were replaced, since rubber tends to lose its flexibility over the years. Also original is varnish, which is applied onto aluminium bodywork in 12 layers. Only minor retouching was needed. Hence, the Phantom VI, well polished and refreshed but still completely original, drove along Slovenian roads for the first time in April of 2019.