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The Godfather
 
The launch of the Silver Dawn in 1949 confirmed the public's acceptance and demand for the standard steel body, as only a few were fitted with specialized coachwork. After the war Rolls-Royce decided that if increasing volume was their main objective, then the manufacture of complete motor cars was required. This meant designing a pressed steel body and modernizing some of their production methods.
 
The company was initially cautious. It didn't know what the public reaction would be to the first non-coachbuilt cars, but they were well received and demand for the Silver Dawn was strong, especially in America to where the first cars were exported. These cars had the straight six 4,257cc engine. This became known as the 'Big Bore - Small Boot'. It had a wheelbase of 120 inch and weighed 4,145 pounds. This car has the first exhaust manifold reproduced by the Rolls Royce factory for this engine type.
 
A new market emerged at home too with the Silver Dawn becoming available in the ÚK in 1953, by which time it had the bigger bore 4,566cc engine, automatic transmission availability and big boot coachwork.
 
Proud owners of the Silver Dawn included John Lennon, Queen Elizabeth II and the Governor of Hong Kong. It has appeared in movies such as 1965 'Help!', 'Steptoe and Son' in 1972, 'The Godfather' in 1972, 'Herbie Rides Again' in 1974, 'Rosebud' in 1975, 'The Toy' in 1982, 'Trading Places' in 1983, 'Spiderman' in 2001 and 'What a Girl Wants' in 2003.
 
The 'Autocar' magazine described the Silver Dawn as an "expensive car designed for the connoisseur who requires an all-round excellence second to none and is prepared to pay for the best that money can buy in quality of manufacture and finish".
 
 
 
 
 
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