Range Rover CSK – ‘Charles Spencer King’ limited edition
- Number 66 of 200 produced
- First owned by Lord Rothschild
Engine upgraded by John Eales, founder of JE Motors (now JE Engineering)
- Sympathetically restored
In 1990 at the UK Motor Show, Land Rover announced that they were doing a special limited-edition run of two-door Range Rovers called the ‘CSK’, named after Charles Spencer King, who was the designer of the original Ranger Rover in 1970. Not only was this production run limited to just 200 examples but the Range Rover CSK was intended to be the pinnacle Range Rover in terms of performance, looks and luxury.
The trusted 3.9 litre V8 was re-worked to produce 185bhp meaning the top speed was boosted to 114mph, whilst the suspension was uprated and stiffened by 25% which allowed for better on road manners, making the Range Rover CSK the most powerful and fastest model yet produced.
All 200 examples were finished in Beluga Black with chrome bumpers and subtle silver coach lines. Inside, all were originally trimmed in Beige leather with walnut dashboard and trim. Most Range Rover CSK’s were fitted with a five-speed manual but a four-speed automatic was also an option that pushed the price of the car north of £30,000 in 1991.
The example offered for sale here at The Classic Motor Hub was originally bought new by a Mr. Moffat from Lex Land Rover in Bury and delivered on the 3rd August 1991- just in time for the grouse season! The extensive history file contains the original order form and invoice as well as several service invoices throughout Mr. Moffat’s ownership until August 1998. According to the handwritten bill of sale on file, the car was sold for the sum of £10,500 to Andy Starr of Colchester, Essex. Upon change of ownership servicing switched to Lindacre Land Rover in Ipswich, Suffolk. Mr. Starr owned the car until around 2006/7. At some point during this period the Range Rover was bought by Chris Davies of Poole, Dorset who sold the car in 2009 according to another hand written bill of sale on file.
It isn’t clear as to who bought the car at this point but a quote on file dated September 2009 from Vantagefield International (a renowned car customiser and trimmer), shows that the car was restored and re-trimmed with black leather and black alcantara finish as well as having the mechanical side tended to as well. The mechanical restoration included an engine upgrade by John Eales from 3.9 Litres to 5.0 Litres and an increase in power to 300bhp! John Eales founded JE Motors in 1975 and developed Land Rover’s V8 for the factory Paris-Dakar cars and developed his own 4.2 litre V8 that was so good that Land Rover purchased the rights to build the engine and fitted it to later production Range Rovers.
Soon after the upgrade was finished, this Range Rover CSK was purchased by Lord Rothschild, head of the renowned Rothschild banking family and a keen motoring enthusiast. He kept the car until 2013 after which the current owner bought the car and set about carrying out further improvements including new suspension all round as well as new sills. Now in wonderful condition and having had over £50,000 spent on it over the last 9 years, this really is a well-loved example of a very rare limited edition Range Rover accompanied by its original owners manual, extensive history file with most MOT certificates back to new and the apt number plate J66 CSK, this being car no.66 of 200. With Jaguar Land Rover now restoring original 2-door Range Rovers at a cost of £135,000 plus the cost of a donor vehicle, this example looks extremely good value for money be it as a collector’s edition or the ultimate shooting wagon.