Classic Cars

Up for Auction: Tiger Hunting Rolls-Royce

The ultimate car for exotic hunting excursions is going under the hammer at Pebble Beach.

The 1925 Rolls-Royce New Phantom was built for one man with one purpose. Custom-built for the Maharajah of Kotah, Umed Sing II loved hunting. He needed a car to meet his needs for traveling India's unforgiving jungle terrain on his hunting expeditions after his favorite prey, Tigers. As a well-respected soldier and statesman, the Maharajah had many connections and very little free time. Rolls-Royce stepped in to develop a bespoke car for him to take on his excursions into the jungle.

Dubbed the "Tiger Car", the Rolls has all the accoutrements needed to perform a successful hunt. A large-caliber gun was fitted for defense against large charging game while a number of guns were mounted all around the cabin. At any one time, the car can be equipped with rifles, shotguns and bird guns. The most impressive gun of all, the Bira .450-caliber machine gun needs to be hand-cranked and was used specifically to hunt Bengal tigers. The machine gun mount is still on the car which will go to the highest bidder of this custom ride. Maybe a measure of overkill (no pun intended) is the Lantaka cannon which attaches to the rear bumper.

It was used for the hunting of elephants. In case you can't spot one of the elephants or tigers lurking in the jungle during night hunts, two big brass searchlights adorn the sides of the New Phantom. The Rolls' is fitted with a crocodile hide interior. A special Chubb safe is also built into the car to carry extra cash (ie. contingency money) in case one of his hunting attendants died during one of the encounters. The Tiger Car amazingly still runs on its original 8-liter 6-cylinder engine which can reach a top speed of 88mph.

It was definitely built more for finagling through dense jungle terrain than cruising down the street. The 1925 Rolls-Royce New Phantom Tiger Car will go on sale on August 19th during the Pebble Beach Car Week on the Monterey Peninsula in California. It is expected to fetch somewhere in the range of $750,000 to $1 million.

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