Introduced in April 1955 as a replacement for the Silver Dawn, the Silver Cloud I was built on a separate frame, which allowed for custom coachwork as an alternative to the standard all-steel factory sedan body. It was built from 1955 to 1966 and marked the company's transition from the coachbuilt cars of its past to a new era of production manufacturing. It enjoyed continuous development that eventually resulted in the Silver Cloud II, which was introduced in 1959, the same year H.J. Mulliner & Co. was purchased by Rolls-Royce.
While similar in appearance, the most noticeable difference between the Silver Cloud I and II was the introduction of a new 6.23-liter V8 engine, replacing the inline six-cylinder unit of the Silver Cloud I. The new V8 engine was a sophisticated design, and the Silver Cloud II was tremendously successful, particularly in the United States during the 1960s. Examples of the Silver Cloud II destined for America included many standard features, among them the smooth-shifting General Motors/Rolls-Royce Hydra-Matic four-speed automatic transmission, power brakes, power-assisted steering, a radio, whitewall tires and environmental controls including heat, defrost and updated ventilation systems. The Silver Cloud II continued through early 1962, when the Silver Cloud III succeeded it.
The final iteration of the series, the Silver Cloud III, was introduced toward the end of 1962 and benefited from various cosmetic changes, the most notable of which was a four-headlamp arrangement. While Rolls-Royce steadfastly refused to publish output ratings, the firm claimed the V8 engine now produced eight percent more horsepower than the Silver Cloud II. With nearly 220 brake horsepower, the car was capable of top speeds approaching 120 mph. Power steering was again standard, but the revised Rolls-Royce automatic transmission now featured three forward speeds, compared to the four speeds of the Silver Cloud II.
H.J. Mulliner provided multiple body styles and the cars in this gallery all wear bodies according to design number 7504.
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