1925 Rolls Royce with towing elephant gun (courtesy npr.org)

“Equipped for hunting Bengal tigers and other wild game, this especially opulent and intriguing 1925 Rolls-Royce Torpedo Sports Tourer was originally commissioned by India’s Umed Singh II. Also known as Sahib Bahadur, Umed Singh II was the Maharaja of Kotah from 1889 until his death in 1940.” C’mon. Is that really the way a Maharaja shot tigers out in, out in, out in India? OK, it’s true: they bite, they scratch, they make an awful fuss. And the Bira could prove useful if a rogue elephant or a herd of untouchables was trying to sneak-up from behind. The gun (with car) is going under the hammer at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Vegas, for something between $500k and $1m, no NFA stamp required (’cause it’s a hand-cranked gun).

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25 Responses to Obscure Object of Desire: Tiger Gun (With 1925 Rolls Royce Phantom I Attached)

    • I’m pretty sure that’s mounted on a gimbal, meant to be used by the car’s occupants in a “repel boarders” fashion.

      Beautiful car, though. The gun’s neat, but I couldn’t afford to feed it.

      • No, its a Howdah pistol. Looks like a double barreled SxS flintlock or percussion, can’t really tell. Howdah pistols are for when animals are charging the hunters and you need to put them down fast. If they were trying to repel human attackers, a .455 Webley would be much better. A Howdah pistol is usually a much bigger caliber.

    • At a minimum, driver, if not eaten by tiger because you fired, deaf in one ear. At maximum, either you miss the tiger and the driver gets eaten, or you get ecxited and shoot the driver. Either way, drivers were cheap in India during that period.

  1. Ya’ll missed the description of the elephant gun attached to the rear bumper. If you enlarge the picture you can see the muzzle.

  2. Wow. This would have been a great weekend photo caption pic.
    It’s interesting noting what used to be an acceptable way to hunt. What a gorgeous setup. Check the bore size on the gun mounted above the rear bumper. 4 bore? 2 bore???

    • Maybe a spare barrel for the cannon? After looking at the extra pictures Matt posted it looks like the rear bumper gun is some sort of brass muzzle loader. Maybe a punt gun?

  3. I feel like this image should remind me of a southern pickup with a rifle rack in the back window, or an older SUV in Pennsylvania with a deer carcass tied to the hood. But, then, NO! This is so much more awesome!

    Please explain why the Maharaja did not see fit to specify a shooting brake when ordering the RR.

  4. This is one of those rare occasions where I say forget the gun, I’ll just take the car. I have little use for a hand cranked gun that requires hand fitted parts and hard to find ammunition. Of course for that price I’d just as soon get an Aston Martin and fit an M134 in the trunk….

  5. I’ve had the chance to view the car in person, and not only is the Rolls Royce itself a very beautiful, the firearms are also pretty sweet

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