Maharaja's tiger-hunting Rolls-Royce to be auctioned

26th July 2011, Comments 0 comments

A 1925 Rolls-Royce car customised with mounted guns and searchlights and used by an Indian maharaja to hunt tigers will be put up for auction in the United States next month, Bonhams auction house said.

The New Phantom was commissioned by Sahib Bahadur, officially known as Umed Singh II, the maharaja of Kota, from the British motor manufacturers.

"The car will now be available at auction for the first time and carries an estimate of $750,000-$1,000,000," London-based Bonhams said in a statement.

It will be sold during the Quail Lodge sale on August 18 and 19 in Carmel, California, during Pebble Beach Car Week.

The car is powered by an 8.0-litre, six-cylinder engine with dual-spark ignition that is set to a low gearing ratio, so the massive car was able to creep through the jungles of Rajasthan.

It has all the standard luxury fittings expected of a Rolls-Royce, but also contains a hidden safe, a nickel-plated hissing snake horn, and a whole host of weapons for the hunt.

There is a mounted "Howdah" gun -- a double-barrel shotgun in pistol form -- a rifle stand in the passenger seat at the back, a mountable Lantaka cannon attached to the bumper, and a machine gun mounted on a matching trailer.

The vehicle also came with two powerful searchlights to enable the maharaja to carry out his hunting at night.

© 2011 AFP

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