1989 ROLLS-ROYCE Corniche Convertible

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1989 ROLLS-ROYCE Corniche Convertible



The ultimate 1980s and 1990s automotive icon of wealth and luxury, the Corniche sold for nearly twice the price of the standard Silver Shadow saloon, and represented only a sliver of Rolls-Royce’s output of exclusive and hand-built products.

Very early and very late cars are particularly scarce and desirable.

The Vehicle

That includes the auction car, which is from the tail end of Series II production, and is one of just 1,226 made over a roughly four-year run.

This car was constructed with several unusual and interesting features, and its beautifully preserved cosmetics underscore its special status.

On the Outside

Externally, it’s quite difficult to distinguish a Corniche II from a III or IV, and even the earliest 1971 Series I examples look strikingly similar to the final 1995 Corniche S.

Color-keyed bumpers introduced with the 1986 Series II were small concessions to modernity, but overall the Corniche remained a steadfastly formal, conservative shape–exactly as Rolls’ clientele still preferred in the days before standard 21” wheels and illuminated hood ornaments.

Speaking of The Spirit of Ecstasy, the one fitted here has been gold plated, possibly from new by special request. This ties in nicely with the gold coachline seen down either flank, as well as the caramel or sable colored convertible top.

Trim appears to be complete, and overall cosmetics seem to be very well preserved.

On the Inside

Rich, extremely high-quality materials are found throughout the airy, quiet cabin, and condition appears to be preserved in a similarly nice state to the exterior.

Note the period Sony head unit as well as the corded analog cell phone tucked away beneath the center console.


The car’s engine bay looks impressively clean and complete, and this is especially noticeable by the condition of the green and yellow painted metal placard near the left side suspension tower–normally these have been rendered illegible by age, and even on very well-kept Corniches and Silver Shadows.

The engine itself is the expected L410 series RR V8 in classic “six and three-quarter” displacement, a great match for its factory partner, an equally-smooth and robust GM 3-speed automatic.

History Highlights

This car is sold with limited documentation.

What We Think

Corniches are very special cars, mixing all the smoothness, refinement, and grace of the Silver Shadow with added exclusivity and infinite headroom at the touch of a switch. This one’s extraordinary spec, cosmetics, and dark colors make it particularly attractive.

Estimated $70,000 - $100,000.

Please note that this car is titled as a 1989.


It should be noted that this vehicle has been on static display for a number of years and there is no history available beyond that displayed in our photography section.

We have not started or driven the car so cannot vouch for its mechanical viability or functionality. It will require recommissioning prior to road use and is sold ‘as seen’.

Due to California emissions laws, please note that this vehicle may only be sold to an out-of-state resident for use outside of California or to a licensed automotive dealer.

Please note that the title for this vehicle is in transit.

Buyers should expect the title within 30 business days following the sale; however, please note that for reasons beyond Bonhams/Market control, including any delays in lien releases by lien holder and/or delays by Department of Motor Vehicles (or equivalent) in certain states, there are instances where the Buyer may not receive the title within 30 business days and, in those circumstances, Bonhams/Market will work to provide the titles to the Buyer as soon as possible.

If a Lot is rendered “Title in Transit”, it is unlikely that the Buyers will receive the title in the mail within 30 business days following the auction/sale; however, Bonhams/Market will work to provide the titles to the Buyer as soon as possible.

The Buyer acknowledges that delays in transferring titles including, due to delays at government Motor Vehicle departments, happen from time-to-time and, the Buyer will hold both Bonhams/Market and the Consignor harmless from any allegations of damages arising out of government delays.

Please note it is the responsibility of the Buyer to transfer ownership in compliance with their jurisdictional rules and regulations.

Bidders MUST ensure they are aware of the registration situation of a car in auction, and whether it will be possible to export/register a vehicle in their country BEFORE they bid.

All vehicles MUST BE COLLECTED WITHIN 7-DAYS of the auction end. Storage fees of £180 + VAT apply (per week) thereafter without exception.

If needed, Footman James classic car insurance and Classic Concierge offer storage can offer you options, plus we have a list of contacts who can help with transport and shipping both domestic and international.  

BORING, but IMPORTANT: Please note that whilst we at The Market always aim to offer the most descriptive and transparent auction listings available, we cannot claim they are perfect analyses of any of the vehicles for sale. We offer far greater opportunity for bidders to view, or arrange inspections for each vehicle thoroughly prior to bidding than traditional auctions, and we always encourage bidders to take advantage of this. We do take a good look at those vehicles which are delivered to our premises for sale, but this only results in our unbiased personal observations, not those of a qualified inspector or other professional, or the result of a long test drive.

Also, localised paint repairs are common with collectable and classic cars and if they have been professionally carried out then they may be impossible to detect, even if we see the car in person. So, unless we state otherwise, please assume that any vehicle could have had remedial bodywork at some point in its life.

Additionally, please note that most of the videos on our site have been recorded using basic cameras which often result in 'average' sound quality; in particular, engines and exhausts notes can sound a little different to how they are in reality.

Please note that this is sold as seen (Caveat Emptor) and that, as is normal for used goods bought at auction, a return policy does not apply. See our FAQs for more info, and feel free to inspect any vehicle as much as you wish.

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  • Location: Santa Paula, CA, United States
  • Seller Type: Private
  • Odometer Reading: 44544
  • Chassis Number: SCAZD02A3KCX25232
  • Gearbox: Auto
  • Steering position: Left-hand drive
  • Colour: Black
  • Interior: Tan Leather
  • Estimated Price: $70,000 - $100,000

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