In the 1930s, Rolls-Royce’s Derby factory supplied Bentleys only as chassis, without bodies, and many customers for these refined, fast and enormously desirable cars would then turn to a particular coachbuilder to design and construct a body for them to meet their tastes and requirements. From Abbey of Acton, West London, to Worblaufen of Switzerland, by way of great names like Barker, Gurney Nutting, HJ Mulliner and Saoutchik, Coachwork on Derby Bentleys covers all the British and overseas coachbuilders on the Bentley chassis, and reviews the bodies they built on the 3.5-litre, 4.25-litre and the short-lived Mark V. The British coachbuilders are dealt with in alphabetical order, as are the overseas companies in a separate section, with details of the different types of bodies they supplied. Bentley aficionados will particularly appreciate the inclusion of chassis numbers for all the cars bodied by all the coachbuilders, which makes this a truly inclusive work. There are some 280 colour photographs, including in-detail shoots of 40 outstanding cars by the distinguished automotive photographer Simon Clay, and 80 black-and-white illustrations from the archives. Celebrating as it does the work of the leading coachbuilders of the era, as well as Bentley’s quite exceptional productions of the 1930s, this book offers an unrivaled store of knowledge for the many enthusiasts and owners who care passionately about the cars, and serves as a tribute to the people who made them.
After graduating from Oxford and pursuing further academic studies at Reading, James Taylor spent 12 years working in central government. However, the lure of writing about cars – which he was doing in his spare time – proved too great and he decided to turn it into a career. James has now written well over 100 books in all, and among them have been several definitive one-make or one-model titles. He has written for enthusiast magazines in several countries, has translated books from foreign languages, and even delivers effective writing training in both the public and private sectors. He spent the best part of ten years as the editor of Land Rover Enthusiast magazine and has always counted the products of the old Rover Company and of Land Rover as his favourite subject. He also co-organised the “15 Years of Rover V8” event at Donington in 1982.