SEP 16th 2014

The Man in Black's Royce heads for the block

Somewhat surprisingly, despite hailing from the southern United States and referring in his songs on occasion to Lincolns, Cadillacs, Packards and ragtop Chevrolets, Johnny Cash was partial to a Rolls-Royce.

Known as ‘the Man in Black’, Cash reportedly owned this Silver Shadow from new in 1970 until the mid-Eighties. It had been gifted to him by the ABC television network after his TV show achieved decent ratings over its 58 episodes and, fittingly, was ordered from Crewe with a black vinyl roof, black interior, black paint and the initials JRC in gold on the rear doors.

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Despite being long-associated with weddings and funerals, we actually think that early Shadows are beginning to emerge from that unfortunate association and are becoming cool cars. Values are still relatively modest, thanks in part to a healthy production run of around 36,000 units and this one is expected to find a new owner when Barrett Jackson offers it for sale at its Las Vegas auction between September 25th-27th.

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As ever, how much value is added by its celebrity association is a tricky question to answer. It transpires that this car was a subject of the hit US TV series Pawn Stars where members of the public approach a Las Vegas pawn shop to convince them to buy their wares. The vendor opened the bidding at $350,000 and even after he’d shaved $150,000 off that price it still didn’t sell.

But you never know. It only takes a few Johnny Cash fans to get into a money-fight on the auction floor and it could still make a strong price. Perhaps $100,000 would be more realistic? At $200,000 though Elvis will have left the building …

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