Phantom Rendezvous, the Global Press Drive for the new Phantom, takes place at the Maybourne Riviera Hotel in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, situated on the spectacular Mediterranean coast and overlooking Monaco. Invited guests from around the world will have the opportunity to drive, and be driven in, the newest incarnation of the marque’s pinnacle product, officially unveiled in mid-May.
Visitants will also be able to view two magnificent Bespoke Phantoms, exhibited on the lawn of the Maybourne Riviera Hotel. Phantom Platino, named after the silver-white finish of the coveted precious metal, platinum, echoes the marque’s formative days with front seats finished in fine Rolls-Royce leather, and those in the rear upholstered in luxurious fabric. The Great British Phantom, a playful nod to the marque’s more patriotic clients, is finished in striking Magma Red and features a Bespoke artwork in the Gallery, inspired by the Union Flag.
Rolls-Royce Phantom occupies an unrivalled position at the very apex of the luxury world. In line with clients’ expressed wishes, Phantom Series II incorporates only light-touch visual and aesthetic enhancements. By way of example, a subtle geometric change to the Pantheon Grille makes the RR Badge of Honour and Spirit of Ecstasy figurine more prominent when viewed from the front. The grille itself is now illuminated, while the headlights are graced with intricate laser-cut bezel starlights – adding further surprise and delight to Phantom’s night-time presence.
The French Riviera has been associated with Rolls-Royce since the first part of the 20th Century, when the Côte d’Azur established itself as the favoured haunt of actors, artists, musicians and other wealthy luminaries of the Belle Epoque. There is also a potent historical resonance for the company. In 1912, Sir Henry Royce built a villa, La Mimosa, in the village of Le Canadel, where he subsequently spent every winter until his death in 1933.
Phantom Series II: NEDC combined: CO2 emissions: 345 g/km; Fuel consumption: 18.7 mpg / 15.1 l/100km. WLTP combined: CO2 emissions: 351-362 g/km; Fuel consumption: 17.7-18.2 mpg / 15.5-16.0 l/100km.
Phantom Extended Series II: NEDC combined: CO2 emissions: 345 g/km; Fuel consumption: 18.7 mpg / 15.1 l/100km. WLTP combined: CO2 emissions: 353-365 g/km; Fuel consumption: 17.4-18.1 mpg / 15.6-16.2 l/100km.
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars celebrates the 118th anniversary of the historic first meeting between Henry Royce and The Hon. Charles Stewart Rolls – which took place on 4 May 1904
The company they founded together created ‘the best car in the world’, a position still occupied today by the marque’s products
Phantom, Rolls-Royce’s pinnacle product, has continued to evolve technically, aesthetically and dynamically to maintain its pre-eminence in the Rolls-Royce offering, and in the world of luxury
The eighth generation of Phantom reflects Royce’s held conviction that “small things make perfection, but perfection is no small thing”.
“As we reflect on Phantom’s remarkable heritage, I am struck by the unique place it occupies in the hearts and minds of our most demanding Rolls-Royce clients. Phantom is the beneficiary of the most ambitious forms of Rolls-Royce Bespoke, transforming into whatever our clients want it to be. Indeed, Phantom is not only the ‘best car in the world’, but the best car for them in their world.”
Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Chief Executive Officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars marks the 118th anniversary of the first meeting between its founders, Henry Royce and The Hon. Charles Stewart Rolls at the Midland Hotel, Manchester, England in 1904.
Through the combination of Royce’s engineering genius and Rolls’ talent for promotion, their company soon became recognised as the maker of ‘the best car in the world’ – a title that Rolls-Royce Motor Cars proudly retains more than a century later.
Today, the marque’s pinnacle product – Phantom – is the ultimate expression of Bespoke luxury designed and handmade at the Home of Rolls-Royce, Goodwood. As part of its annual reflections on its origins and unique heritage, Rolls-Royce looks back through Phantom’s lineage, exploring how its namesakes evolved over the years to remain consistently at the apex of the Rolls-Royce offering.
THE ORIGINS OF EXCELLENCE
In the automotive industry’s earliest days, luxury car makers produced only the mechanical components (engine, transmission, chassis and so on) known as a rolling chassis, which underpinned the car. The bodies were designed and constructed by independent coachbuilders to the customer’s specification.
For manufacturers, including Rolls-Royce, improvements in design and engineering were directed almost entirely towards technical aspects of the car’s performance. These included reliability, hill-climbing capability, ease of control and a set of ride quality attributes still known collectively as noise, vibration and harshness (NVH).
From the outset, Phantom earned the title ‘the best car in the world’ through the superior quality and designs of the rolling chassis – the finest platform on which coachbuilders could reach the very apex of their craft.
REDRAWING TECHNICAL BOUNDARIES
The Phantom family was born in 1925 when Rolls-Royce launched Phantom I. With its massive low-range torque, cutting-edge technology and ‘Magic Carpet Ride’, the new model immediately established the fundamental traits that would define the family for the next 100 years. Then, as now, Rolls-Royce declined to rest on its laurels, and by 1929, its successor was ready for the market.
Phantom II represented another step-change in engineering and technology. In 1930, the company unveiled the Phantom II Continental, which gave customers a choice of a more performance-orientated model for those who preferred to drive themselves. The ‘standard’ longer-wheelbase car was retained for chauffeur-driven use. This practice set the precedent for today’s Phantom and Phantom Extended.
THE NEED FOR SPEED
While the new Continental could attain speeds up to 95mph, it was still not as fast as some of its rivals. The company decided to resolve the matter once and for all. In 1934, applying its proven experience with aero engines, it developed a new 7.3-litre V12 engine, mounted on a new chassis. The resulting Phantom III, when fitted with lightweight coachwork, was capable of exceeding 100mph.
In 1939, Rolls-Royce produced an experimental car, nicknamed ‘The Scalded Cat’. In later years, this car was often loaned to influential individuals, including HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. The Duke was so impressed that he persuaded Rolls-Royce to build him a more formal version; the marque obliged with the first Phantom IV, delivered in July 1950. The car remains on front-line (albeit reduced) duty at The Royal Mews, under its pre-delivery codename, Maharajah. Though originally intended as a one-off, 18 Phantom IV cars were completed: 17 were sumptuously appointed commissions for other royalty and heads of state; the other, somewhat bizarrely, was built as a pick-up truck for use by Rolls-Royce as transport and on-the-road component testing.
A FINAL FLOURISH
In 1959, the marque launched Phantom V, equipped with its most up-to-date V8 engine. In 1967, the car underwent subtle technical changes that were deemed, at the very last minute, sufficient to justify its redesignation as Phantom VI.
By 1968 the only true coachbuilder left in Britain was Rolls-Royce’s own in-house company, Mulliner Park Ward. These magnificent cars soldiered on through the mid-1980s, until production dwindled to a mere two or three cars a year, and finally ceased altogether in 1992.
BRINGING VISIONS TO LIFE
Every generation up to Phantom VI was essentially a rolling chassis. The bodies were built to the owner’s individual requirements by some of the most famous and prestigious names in British and European coachbuilding.
While this was normal practice in the luxury automotive world, Phantom stood apart through its ability – thanks to Royce’s engineering genius and the excellence of the chassis’ components and construction – to carry coachwork of the very finest quality, weight and complexity.
At every stage in Phantom’s development, owners exploited its potential to the full, creating some of the most magnificent, eye-catching and radical motor cars ever to grace the road. And since the chassis and body were separate, it was possible for a subsequent owner to change the car’s appearance to suit their own taste and requirements.
Many Phantoms took on more than one guise over their long, often globe-trotting lives: in some cases, they were merely repainted; in others, the whole car was rebuilt from the chassis upwards, taking on an entirely new form and character. And for all their extraordinary diversity, every one of the examples shown below is a true Rolls-Royce in terms of its underlying engineering, materials and construction, performance, ride quality and comfort – and, above all, in being exactly as the owner wanted it.
1930 Phantom II (62GY)
This handsome Phantom II was coachbuilt by Hooper of London with a Dual Cowl Tourer body. At the request of the owner, a wealthy timber merchant from Texas, 50 additions were specified with touring intentions. These include a larger fuel tank, louvered bonnet and radiator two inches taller than standard. The car was originally purchased for the owner’s honeymoon and went on to tour the Continent extensively until 1939. The present custodian acquired the car in 1998 and has since won prestigious awards including the Louis Vuitton Classic Parfums Givenchy Trophy pre-war tourers and Most Sporting Tourer in the Biarritz Concours.
1933 Phantom II Continental (55MW)
This ‘concealed-head boat body’ was a speciality of coachbuilder Park Ward. Its main feature was the compact folding hood that, when fully retracted, was entirely concealed under the rear deck, giving the coachwork its distinctive uninterrupted line. The original upholstery was textured pigskin.
Source: ‘Park Ward The Innovative Coachbuilder’ by Malcolm Tucker.
1933 Phantom Ill (3BT103)
This rare two-door sedanca coupé was coachbuilt by HJ Mulliner for Apsley Cherry-Garrard, one of the surviving members of Captain Scott’s last, fateful expedition to the South Pole in 1912. The car was originally finished in Primrose Yellow with a dyed Vaulmol leather interior; in the late 1940s it was repainted in black. The car was briefly owned by the legendary actor Sir Ralph Richardson; it then spent time in Wales and the USA before returning to the UK in the late 70s / early 80s. It sat neglected in a barn until 2018 when it was bought by its present owner, and has now been painstakingly restored using many authentic components, including original numbered engine parts.
Source: Alpine Eagle Ltd.
1937 Phantom III (3BT85)
London coachbuilder Hooper & Co built several bodies in this striking saloon-with-division style, which looks fast even when standing still thanks to its semi-razor edge styling and swooping curves. The art-deco chrome-plated flashes to the body and wings simply enhance the sense of kinetic energy.
Source: ‘The Spectre Arises’ by Steve Stuckey.
1965 Phantom V (5VD63)
This Phantom was originally owned by Wing Commander Patrick Barthropp. In 1968, John Lennon purchased the car from Barthropp coinciding with the launch of The Beatles’ White Album. In September 1969 he sold the car to Allen Klein, an American businessman.
The car appeared in the Oscar-winning film Georgy Girl (1966), the classic Let It Be (1970), starring The Beatles, Performance (1970), featuring Mick Jagger, and then prominently featured in The Greek Tycoon (1978) starring Anthony Quinn.
In 2016 after extensive restoration, Jody Klein, a longtime Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts’ Club member brought the car to the Concurs d’Elegance, Lincolnshire, where it was awarded first place for Best In Class.
James Young, established in 1863, is renowned for creating some of the most elegant coachwork to ever grace a motor car chassis. Perhaps the pinnacle of their achievements was realised in their PV23 design, developed especially for the Rolls-Royce Phantom V chassis, with 22 such bodies being built.
This model was usually finished in black, but for 5LVF65 the lighter shade of Ivory further enhances the classic elegance of every curve and line from the pen of its acclaimed designer, A. F. McNeil.
The interior contains a remarkably spacious rear compartment, with the finest cabinetry work below the division glass. Champagne cloth to the rear compartment is chosen for greater comfort than the similarly coloured and more resilient leather that the chauffeur would enjoy.
Source: P&A Wood.
2015 Phantom VII (Serenity Phantom)
Rolls-Royce created this magnificent Bespoke Phantom VII Extended for its display at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. Inspired by opulent motor cars made for international royalty in the early 1900s, the rear passenger cabin is finished in a unique Smoke Green raw silk, specially handwoven and decorated with hand-embroidered and hand-painted Chinoiserie blossom motifs that took up to 600 hours to complete. The design also appears in the fascia and marquetry inlays in the rear doors; smoked cherrywood and bamboo elements, and details echoing the raked gravel in Japanese gardens complete the interior’s calm, natural ambiance. At the time, the Mother of Pearl exterior paint finish was the most complex – and expensive – the marque had ever produced.
2021 Phantom VIII (Phantom Oribe)
A unique collaboration saw the House of Rolls-Royce and the House of Hermès co-create a Bespoke Phantom for Japanese entrepreneur Yusaku Maezawa. Named Phantom Oribe, the motor car features a Bespoke two-tone exterior finish, inspired by the client’s world-class collection of ancient Japanese ceramics, Oribe ware. In an unusual move, the Rolls-Royce paint was made available for use on the client’s private jet that the Phantom is paired with.
The interior is finished predominantly in Hermès Enea Green leather. The Gallery features an artwork based on a design by the celebrated French artist and illustrator Pierre Péron (1905–1988), who created many of Hermès’ iconic scarves.
AN ICON REBORN
At one minute past midnight, on 1 January 2003, the first Phantom VII was handed over to its new owner – the first motor car to be produced at the brand-new Home of Rolls-Royce at Goodwood, West Sussex, England. A thoroughly modern interpretation of the marque’s signature lines and proportions, as first set down by Sir Henry Royce himself, it was built entirely in-house by Rolls-Royce, with monocoque bodywork to a standard design rather than coachbuilt. In one important sense, however, it retained a link with its heritage, in that every car was hand-built by a team of skilled craftspeople. Furthermore, the marque’s Bespoke programme meant Phantom was effectively a canvas upon which patrons could realise their own visions and desires.
Over its 13-year lifespan, Phantom VII cemented Rolls-Royce as the world’s pre-eminent superluxury motor manufacturer, and its own place as the marque’s pinnacle product. But just like their predecessors, Rolls-Royce’s designers and engineers understood that perfection is a moving target: that Phantom was never ‘done.’
In 2016, Rolls-Royce presented Phantom VIII. This was the first Rolls-Royce to be built on the marque’s proprietary Architecture of Luxury, an all-aluminium spaceframe designed to underpin every future motor car produced at Goodwood.
Phantom VIII was specifically designed to be the ultimate platform for Bespoke commissions. This has resulted in some of the most technically ambitious and challenging projects ever undertaken by the marque’s designers, engineers and specialist craftspeople. It is also the only Rolls-Royce model to feature the Gallery – an uninterrupted swathe of glass that runs the full width of the fascia, behind which the client can display a commissioned work of art or design.
“The Spirit of Ecstasy is the most famous and desirable automotive mascot in the world. More than just a symbol, she is the embodiment of our brand, and a constant source of inspiration and pride for the marque and its clients. Like our brand, she has always moved with the times while staying true to her nature and character. In her new form she is more streamlined and graceful than ever before – the perfect emblem for the most aerodynamic Rolls-Royce ever created, and for gracing the prow of our bold electric future.” Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Chief Executive Officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
Rolls-Royce has reimagined its iconic Spirit of Ecstasy figurine to grace the bonnet of its new all-electric motor car, Spectre, 111 years to the day the Spirit of Ecstasy was first registered as intellectual property of Rolls-Royce on 6th February 1911.
The figurine has been remodelled with a lower, more dynamic stance that brings her much closer to the drawings made by her original creator, the illustrator and sculptor Charles Robinson Sykes, in the early years of the 20th century. It also sees her physical form represent The Expression, a visual device that forms part of the marque’s new visual language. The new Spirit of Ecstasy stands 82.73mm tall, compared to her predecessor’s 100.01mm. Her robes, which flow behind her in the slipstream – often but erroneously characterised as ‘wings’ – have been subtly reshaped to make them more aerodynamic and realistic.
The most visible change is her stance. Previously, she has stood with her feet together, legs straight and tilting at the waist. Now, she is a true goddess of speed, braced for the wind, one leg forward, body tucked low, her eyes focused eagerly ahead. These changes have both practical and stylistic benefits, contributing to Spectre’s remarkable aerodynamic properties. The earliest Spectre prototypes have a drag coefficient (cd) of just 0.26, making it the most aerodynamic Rolls-Royce ever created. The figure is expected to improve during the product’s exhaustive testing protocols undertaken in 2022.
This new expression captures the essence of Charles Sykes’ original drawings, but rather than simply being redrawn or redesigned, her new shape has been digitally sculpted by a computer modeller working at the Home of Rolls-Royce, who has a passion for life drawing and sculpture. Their experience in this field was invaluable in developing the figurine’s elegant lifelike facial features as well as her expression, which deftly combines focus and serenity. The designers also consulted stylists at Goodwood for their perspective on her hair, clothes, posture, and expression, adding an authentically contemporary aura to her dynamism and commanding presence.
While all figurines are made using one of the oldest known casting techniques, named lost wax casting or cire-perdue, each is individually finished by hand, so will be minutely different from figurine to figurine. As well as continuing a long Rolls-Royce tradition – until 1939, the mascots were made and polished by Charles Sykes himself – this subtle, ephemeral human element creates an intriguing contrast to the precise, highly engineered motor car she sits atop.
Though relatively rare in the modern era, changes to the Spirit of Ecstasy have been made throughout her 111-year lifespan. She has been rendered in various sizes and materials and, briefly, in a kneeling position. The new version created for Spectre will appear on all future models: the current design will still be used on Phantom, Ghost, Wraith, Dawn and Cullinan and their Black Badge alter egos where applicable.
Two classic Gordon Murray designed race cars to star at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed
Legendary Brabham Ford BT44B to run up Goodwood’s famous hill climb route. Joined by IGM F750, one of the first race cars to be designed by Gordon Murray. Professor Gordon Murray was named as one of the judges of the 26th annual Cartier Style et Luxe Concours d’Élégance. Goodwood Festival of Speed runs from July 8 to 11 – one of the world’s greatest celebrations of motoring and motorsport.
Gordon Murray Automotive is set to light up this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed with two ground-breaking Gordon Murray-designed heritage cars being driven up the famous 1.16mile hill. The 1972 IGM F750 and 1975 Brabham Ford BT44B will star at the Festival which runs from July 8-11. Professor Gordon Murray will be personally driving his creations over the weekend, with racing driver Marino Franchitti amongst the others sharing the driving duties.
Professor Gordon Murray has also been invited by the Duke of Richmond to be a member of the judging panel for the 26th annual Cartier ‘Style et Luxe’ Concours d’Élégance, the winner of which will be announced on Sunday 11 July.
Professor Gordon Murray CBE said, The Goodwood Festival of Speed is the ultimate event for any motoring enthusiast. That’s why I was keen to have two of my favourite racing cars run up the hill. Both cars demonstrate the advantage of lightweight innovation and both established principles that allowed me to have a successful career in motor racing. They also taught me many things. Learnings that I have even employed in our latest T.50 supercar and its T.50s Niki Lauda track-focused sibling. I can’t wait to see them being driven up the hill and experience them again myself.
The 1972 IGM F750 was the first race car that Gordon Murray designed after he arrived in the UK from South Africa in 1969. Determined to go racing he settled on the 750 Formula, designing this innovative monocoque car, with a lay-down driving position, rear radiator and 10-inch wheels, all to create a car with a low frontal area. It also featured a Murray-designed rod operated rising rate front suspension system, which is now universal on all racing cars. The car running at Goodwood is chassis T.4 001 which was discovered as unassembled components and then reconstructed by the Gordon Murray Design team in 2019.
The Brabham Ford BT44B, was a development of the successful BT44, with a step forward in aerodynamic performance. Powered by a 460hp Ford 3.0-litre V8, it gave Carlos Pace his first GP win at his home event at the 1975 Brazil Grand Prix. Brabham teammate Carlos Reutemann also took it to victory at the 1975 German GP. The BT44 was the first GP car to utilise rising rate pull rod suspension and have the rear suspension directly attached to the engine.
Growing the Rolls-Royce family and finding new homes for previously owned Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
Every year Rolls-Royce Motor Cars North America highlights the achievement of a single dealer that exemplifies its ability to deliver on the brand’s promise of the world’s most admired luxury brand even for clients acquiring a previously owned Rolls-Royce Motor Car. For 2020, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Beverly Hills has been recognized as the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars 2020 Global Provenance Dealer of the Year. This award recognizes the accomplishments of the entire operation in Beverly Hills in ensuring the experience that every Rolls-Royce Provenance client deserves and expects.
To qualify as a Provenance Rolls-Royce motor car, each car must have been maintained in strict adherence to Rolls‑Royce servicing standards. Each car receives a rigorous inspection and can only be obtained through an authorized Rolls-Royce motor car dealer. Second owners appreciate the reliability, the timeless appeal and instant availability of a ‘Rolls-Royce Provenance’ motor car.
“Despite the hurdles presented to us by 2020, I am proud that my Rolls-Royce team has earned this award. Taking care of some of the most demanding and discerning clients in the world wasn’t easy managing a virtual relationship, but my team adapted new skills and processes to ensure acquiring a previously owned Rolls-Royce was just as much a luxury experience as acquiring and owning a new one.” said Tom O’Gara, CEO of O’Gara Coach.
“With more than a century of history for the brand, and with more than three of every four Rolls-Royce/Viator cars ever built still being on the road, Provenance is critical to the brand. The Beverly Hills team understands that finding that second home for a Rolls-Royce commission is important to maintaining and growing the brand. We started 2021 with the strongest quarter of new commission deliveries, we have also seen the highest level of Provenance deliveries during the same period,” said Martin Fritsches, President and CEO of Rolls-Royce/Viator Americas.
The Rolls-Royce Motor Cars 2020 Global Provenance Dealer of the Year award is one that is earned, by highlighting specific achievements to one single dealership. It also reinforces the appeal of the high end, pre-owned car business to customers and showcases the dealerships’ ability to adapt to a more virtual sales relationship with all buyers. The Provenance previously owned program underpins the confidence in the quality of Goodwood manufactured, previously owned ‘Provenance’ Rolls-Royces.
When buying from a Rolls-Royce Provenance motor car dealership, customers are protecting their investment. Provence makes sure cars have been maintained to strict Rolls‑Royce servicing requirements, to be considered and are only sold through authorized Rolls-Royce motor car dealers. This includes offering its customers and clients around the world with guarantee of obtaining an independent vehicle history and mileage verification, as well as a protection plan that provides 24-hour roadside assistance, servicing, and warranty for an additional two-years. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars of Beverly Hills has become the hub of ‘previously owned’ cars and a place where customers feel enough trust to purchase these luxury vehicles.
On Friday, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars’ dealership in Beverly Hills hosted an event for their acceptance of the prestigious Rolls-Royce Provenance Dealer of the Year Award. The event showed off four models of Rolls-Royce vehicles, including the newest Rolls-Royce Cullinan and Phantom. All of the vehicles were buffed and shined to pearly perfection, showcasing the grandeur of their design. Upon first opening the doors of a Rolls-Royce, the weighty feeling of the door foretells of the magnificent details inside. The large sunroof and impressive grille of the Rolls-Royce Cullinan were only some of the super SUV’s astonishing features. In the Phantom, the Bespoke starlight headliner created the illusion of the night sky as appearing inside the vehicle. We were wowed by the lavishness of the Rolls-Royce vehicles, which all promise to be the stars of every street they venture down. The attentive staff of Rolls-Royce Beverly Hills glad shared their immense knowledge of the vehicles and beamed with pride at the success of their dealership.
Upon accepting the award with dignity and integrity, the RRMC Beverly Hills staff toasted with Don Perignon vintage champagne. The award was a silver trophy in the shape of The Spirit of Ecstasy, the classic Rolls-Royce bonnet ornament sculpture.
360 Magazine was particularly impressed with the bespoke headliner in the Phantom, which sparkled with opulence, even in daylight. Further, the elegance with which the distinguished award was accepted by Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Beverly Hills was admirable. The comradery between the staff was palpable, as they all signed celebratory champagne bottles and cheered. The Rolls-Royce dealership staff was very welcoming, and they delighted in reveling about their well-deserved success. From here, Rolls-Royce can only look to continue their esteemed legacy of creating luxurious and celebrated vehicles.
PHANTOM ORIBE: A BESPOKE ROLLS-ROYCE PHANTOM IN COLLABORATION WITH HERMÈS
“This magnificent expression of our pinnacle product represents a landmark for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, bringing together two houses with more than three centuries’ combined experience and heritage. It is the result of a deep, genuine collaboration between the Houses of Rolls-Royce and Hermès, in which designers, materials specialists and skilled craftspeople worked side by side to create a truly one-of-a-kind Phantom. It has been an extraordinary privilege to unite on such a creatively challenging, technically demanding commission and bring our client’s remarkable vision so beautifully to life.”
–Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Chief Executive Officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
“This unique Phantom is a fusion of East and West, ancient and modern, serenity and exhilaration. It was a great creative and cultural exchange working with Hermès; we learned a great deal from each other. It is always a pleasure when a client brings us a bold, clear and imaginative vision, and a great thrill to see it realised so perfectly.”
–Michael Bryden, Lead Designer, Rolls-Royce Bespoke Collective
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has co-created a magnificent Bespoke Phantom in a unique collaboration with Hermès. Designed and handcrafted by a combined team of Bespoke specialists at the Home of Rolls-Royce at Goodwood, West Sussex, and Hermès in Paris, Phantom Oribe reflects the personality and passions of its owner, Japanese entrepreneur Yusaku Maezawa. The client envisioned the car as a ‘land jet’, bringing the serene exclusivity of private air travel to the road.
The car’s striking two-tone exterior matches the characteristic green and cream glazes of antique Japanese Oribe ware, of which Maezawa-san is a prominent collector. The upper part is finished in Oribe Green, a fully Bespoke color created exclusively for the client; in an unusual move, Rolls-Royce has made the paint available for use on the client’s private jet the Phantom will be paired with. Developed over many months by specialists in the Surface Finish Centre at Goodwood, it perfectly captures the lustrous, deep-green glaze that characterizes these 16 century ceramics. The effect is beautifully completed by the cream-white lower section.
The Oribe ware-inspired colorway harmoniously continues through the interior, created and realized through a true meeting of minds between Hermès designers and craftspeople in Paris, and the Rolls-Royce Bespoke Collective of designers, engineers and craftspeople at Goodwood in West Sussex. Together, they applied their shared expertise and ingenuity to ensure every individual component embodies the finest traditions of both houses.
The interior is finished predominantly in Hermès Enea Green leather, extending to details that include the immediate touch-points of the client; for example, the steering wheel, duchess handles, gear selector and the rotary controls for the motor car’s climate settings.
The Hermès leather flows around the upper instrument panel, interior pillars and parcel shelf. It also enrobes less visible surfaces including the glove compartment and luggage compartment lining, centre console, decanter stowage compartment and Champagne cooler. In a sign of the project’s truly collaborative nature, and the two makers’ mutual esteem, the glove compartment lid is embossed with the signature Habillé par Hermès Paris.
Delicate Hermès piping adorns the headrest cushions and calf supports of the rear seats, while soft Seashell White accents and matching lambswool floor mats create a sense of light and space throughout.
The interior is also replete with examples of Rolls-Royce Bespoke design and handcraftsmanship. Wooden speaker frets, for example, are formed by meticulously perforating the Open Pore Royal Walnut veneer applied to the doors, creating a seamless, textured aesthetic and delicate haptics. Open Pore Royal Walnut is additionally applied to the center and rear consoles and picnic table backs; in another first for Rolls-Royce, the interior features Hermès ‘Toile H’ canvas on the door armrests, center and rear consoles and, most notably, the signature headliner.
Hermès brings its distinctive equestrian heritage and innovative craftsmanship know-how to the car, with the leather upholstery created using stitching and edge-painting techniques originally employed by master saddlers. For Phantom’s Gallery, a feature unique to Rolls-Royce, that runs the length of the motor car’s fascia, Hermès commissioned an artwork based on a design by the celebrated French artist and illustrator Pierre Péron (1905–1988) who created many of the House’s iconic scarves. The work, inspired by the famous Hermès horse motif, is hand-painted on Open Pore Royal Walnut and is presented as though staged in an art gallery, behind glass.
Torsten Müller-Ötvös added, “This majestic and tasteful Rolls-Royce Phantom demonstrates what is possible when talented people from two of the world’s great houses work closely together alongside a far-sighted, inspirational client like Maezawa-san. It is a meeting of minds, expertise, visions and skill that represents the very best of our respective craftspeople and capabilities.”
*Photographer: Oribe Ware photographs by Kaoru Yamada
ROLLS-ROYCE MARKS WORLD BOOK DAY WITH ‘MAKING A LEGEND’
Rolls-Royce celebrates UNESCO World Book Day on 23 April 2021 with Making A Legend
The new book explores the unique blend of hand-craftmanship, and world-class technology embodied in the present generation of Rolls-Royce motor cars
Authors Simon Van Booy and Harvey Briggs granted exclusive behind-the-scenes access with photographer Mariano Vilarós at Rolls-Royce’s Global Centre of Luxury Manufacturing Excellence at Goodwood
Foreword provided by Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Chief Executive, Torsten Müller-Ötvös
Hardcover, 296 pages, full-colour photographs throughout; now available from all good retailers
“When the authors approached us with their proposal for this book, we welcomed them with open arms. Simon and Harvey are both distinguished writers with great perceptiveness, integrity and enthusiasm. They joined us at the Home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood, West Sussex, where we gave them our full support, granting access to whatever and whoever they wanted to see and talk about. Their words, combined with the images captured by Mariano Vilarós, make this a definitive history of the marque, right up to and including, the present day. Its publication represents a worthy addition to the literature of Rolls-Royce, a fine celebration of our unique products and people, and a perfect book with which to acknowledge World Book Day.” – Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Chief Executive, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
An important and worthy addition to the extensive Rolls-Royce literary canon, Making A Legend takes in a broad sweep of the company’s history, featuring cars from the marque’s very earliest days in the 1900s, right up to new Ghost launched in 2020.
The book provides an intimate, highly contemporary account of life at the house of luxury, with the aim of connecting readers with the people who make the best car in the world. The narrative follows the process of transforming a customer’s idea into a finished product, through interviews with individuals from all departments including Bespoke designers, skilled craftspeople and assembly specialists.
Over almost 300 lavishly illustrated pages, every detail of how a Rolls-Royce motor car is designed, engineered and meticulously hand-built, is examined. Chapters include Design and Customization, Paint and Finish, Chassis Assembly, Woodwork, Leather and Testing; there is also an entire section devoted to the Spirit of Ecstasy, the figurine that has graced the bonnet of Rolls-Royce motor cars for over 100 years.
Emmy-winning automotive journalist Harvey Briggs, novelist Simon Van Booy and photographer Mariano Vilarós were granted unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to Rolls-Royce’s facilities and people over several months before the Covid-19 pandemic struck.
Briggs, who grew up in America’s Motor City, Detroit, and has reviewed every new Rolls-Royce model since Wraith in 2013, recalls being surprised at how much work is still performed by hand, even in the assembly process. He was also struck by the level of innovation in today’s Rolls-Royce motor cars, and the marque’s commitment to delivering impeccable quality.
Harvey Briggs commented, “The first time I visited Rolls-Royce in Goodwood, I was in awe of the exceptional creativity and skill of the people who design and build these remarkable cars. I knew I had to tell those stories.”
Simon Van Booy added, “The friendly perfectionism for craft, displayed by everyone we interviewed and Mariona photographed, was inspiring to the point where we knew the book had to be something rare and marvelous and functional – rather like a Rolls-Royce itself.”
Organized by UNESCO, World Book and Copyright Day celebrates the role of books and reading as a link between the past and the future, the bridge across generations and cultures. The date, 23rd April, is symbolic in world literature, marking the deaths of playwright and poet William Shakespeare, the creator of Don Quixote, Miguel de Cervantes, and the early Peruvian writer, Inca Garcilaso de la Vega.
Making A Legend is published in hardback by ACC Art Books, and is now available from all good retailers including Amazon.
“Every Bespoke Rolls-Royce represents a unique expression of the clients’ personal passions and character. We have had the privilege of working with Mr. and Mrs. Sloss on several previous commissions and were delighted to create a Cullinan Black Badge to augment an already impressive collection. This magnificent interpretation of our all-conquering SUV is a true work of art that captures their passion for racing, luxury, and automotive excellence. Mr. and Mrs. Sloss are highly discerning patrons with a clear vision and exacting standards. In their new Cullinan, as with all their Rolls-Royce motor cars, there is no compromise between style, luxury, and performance. We are delighted they have chosen to share their creation with the wider world.”
-Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Chief Executive Officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
Ben & Christine Sloss, car enthusiasts by day and endurance racers on the weekends, took delivery today of their latest Bespoke Rolls-Royce commission from Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Los Gatos.
The Sloss’s new Cullinan Black Badge is finished in a unique Bespoke colorway, Pikes Peak Blue, created to their personal specification by the Rolls-Royce Bespoke Collective. The name is an homage to the legendary Colorado hill-climb, which is one of their favorite races. Combined with the vivid flashes of Forge Yellow on the hand-painted coachline, wheel-centre pinstripes and brake callipers, it carries the colors of the flag of Modena, the northern Italian province, and the livery carried by all the couple’s racing cars.
The Black Badge variant brings out the darker, edgier, more assertive side of Cullinan’s character. Mr. and Mrs. Sloss’s car includes the signature silver-on-black ‘RR’ monogram, dark window surrounds and custom two-tone Black Badge wheels. To underline the car’s performance credentials, the iconic Spirit of Ecstasy atop the dark Pantheon grille is milled from a solid billet of carbon fibre. Greeting the driver upon opening the front doors are personalized Black Badge tread plates designed to match the Black Badge logo. Each plate underwent a precise Physical Vapor Deposition coating process in Black, and then was engraved to reveal the silver metal of the client’s name – Benjamin on the Driver’s side, Christine on the Passenger’s side.
Inside, the seats are hand-crafted in navy-blue leather with accent stitching and monograms in Forge Yellow; similar contrast highlights appear on the fascia, door pockets and even the face of the brushed metal Bespoke clock. The Bespoke Technical Clock was created with Navy Blue Anodized brushed stainless steel surround and accented with Forge Yellow. The subtle accents with Forge Yellow highlights were developed especially for Mr. Sloss’s project to harmonize with the dark blue interior scheme. Each door panel is adorned with Mrs. Sloss’s personal racing logo – a stylized stiletto in embroidered leather – created by Mrs. Sloss and interpreted by a Bespoke specialist who previously worked as a shoe designer.
The Cullinan Black Badge perfectly complements the Bespoke Dawn Black Badge the Collective created for Mr. Sloss in 2018. In this spectacular example of the world’s most sociable drophead coupé, the color scheme is reversed, with the principal bodywork finished in bright yellow, and the bonnet and coachline in Pikes Peak Blue. The couple’s love of the open sky and Rolls-Royce elegance also carries over to Mrs. Sloss’s own two-tone Dawn.
BACKGROUND: BEN & CHRISTINE SLOSS
Black Badge Cullinan, Black Badge Dawn, Dawn, Wraith
“Our Rolls-Royce story began here at Pebble Beach in 2014 when we were looking for a two-door coupe with four useable seats for adults,” comments Ben Sloss. “Brands such as Aston Martin or Bentley do not offer anything suitable. When we saw the Rolls-Royce Wraith, we loved the style and elegance of the coupe, and when we took it for test drive we were impressed (really, startled) by how well it accelerated and handled, in addition to the sublime ride quality and materials we already associated with the Rolls-Royce brand. The Wraith offered a unique combination of luxury car experience and sports car performance, and we fell in love with it on the spot.”
Ben’s wife Christine subsequently commissioned a Rolls-Royce Dawn, a motorcar that quickly became her daily driver. “You can tell which are the favorite cars in our family by the mileage they have on them,” comments Mrs. Christine Sloss. “My Dawn has over 13,000 miles on the clock, because both Ben and I drive it regularly, and we enjoy its open-air experience so much that Ben decided he wanted one too.”
“Christine and I are both gentleman… err, gentleperson racing drivers, competing in endurance races in GT racing cars, and many of our street cars are two-seater supercars with a very distinctive and personal livery,” continues Ben Sloss. “Michael Fux showed me that Rolls-Royce’s craftspeople could create completely personal, outrageous but beautiful colour schemes, and when I heard about the sportier Dawn Black Badge, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to commission a very personal Rolls-Royce.”
Ben Sloss Dawn Black Badge
Through the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Los Gatos dealership, Ben Sloss worked closely with the Bespoke Collective at the Home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood to realize his vision for his perfect personal Rolls-Royce. His motor-racing pursuits led him to the more driver-focused Dawn Black Badge as the canvas for his vision, a reinterpretation of the livery on the couple’s racing cars.
“Our racing cars carry the colors of the flag of Modena in Northern Italy. I wanted to see what Rolls-Royce could do with those same colors,” comments Mr. Sloss. “The first time I saw the livery the Rolls-Royce team had created for the Dawn, I burst out with “O my God, that’s unreal– I love it!!’ It’s outrageous, it’s over the top… it’s perfect. I still grin every time I see it.”
The Bespoke Collective set to work reinterpreting the color scheme into Rolls-Royce design language, creating two new bespoke paint colors for the exterior of his Dawn Black Badge. The intense deep yellow that adorns the main bodywork has been named ‘Superflare’ due to its radiance under the California sun, whilst it is contrasted with the darkest of navy blues named Pikes Peak Blue, due to Mr. Sloss’ interest in the king of timed hill climbs. A further flash of Superflare yellow offsets the black of the 21” carbon fibre and aluminium wheel.
The same color scheme is continued throughout the interior of Mr. Sloss’ Dawn Black Badge, with the seats, dashboard, tonneau cover and rear seat waterfall clad in Navy Blue leathers, highlighted with Bright Yellow seat piping, stitched RR headrest logos and unique to Black Badge model infinity logo between the rear seats. The yellow theme continues in the cabin with a yellow flash along the door interiors, two-tone Navy Blue and Bright Yellow steering wheel and an exclusively developed Bright Yellow pinstripe applied to the Piano Milori Blue wood dashboard, the first use of Milori Blue outside the one-off customer Phantom, ‘Whispered Muse’, shown at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show. Mr Sloss’ Dawn Black Badge is finished with a Navy Blue, leather-clad Aero Cowling enclosing the rear seats.
Rolls-Royce announced Monday that a brand new intake of apprentices would be welcomed into the company.
18 new minds hailing from all across the UK will join the luxury vehicle titan at its home in Goodwood, West Sussex. They will be known as the “Class of 2020” in a program that began in 2006.
More than 150 aspiring engineers have entered the apprenticeship learning high-level practical and technical skills over the course of two to four years. They learn from Rolls-Royce specialists, gaining knowledge from the best minds in the company.
Of the 18 members of the “Class of 2020,” seven are candidates for the Sir Ralph Robins Degree Apprenticeship scheme, a four-year apprenticeship that grants students a degree from the University of Chichester upon completion.
Rolls-Royce is also providing placements in the industry for over 50 students. The placements last from six to 12 months. It also has a graduate program that makes new positions available every year.
Rolls-Royce releases the first official images of Dawn Silver Bullet, taken outdoors and on the open road
Collection Car photographed on the shores of Lake Garda, showcasing the car in its natural habitat
Selection of images perfectly capture Dawn Silver Bullet’s powerful, high-shouldered outline, distinctive Aero Cowling and the ultra-metallic paint finish
Rolls-Royce today releases the first official images showing Dawn Silver Bullet in its natural habitat – on the open road, as the first of the client commissioned Collection Cars roll off the production line at the Global Centre of Luxury Manufacturing Excellence, in Goodwood, West Sussex.
Photographed on the shores of Lake Garda, a series of in-motion and drone shots capture Dawn Silver Bullet in locations including mountain hairpins and corniche roads. The new photographic portfolio also includes static images, taken in the open air, highlighting the car’s charismatic expression.
Under the Italian sun, Dawn Silver Bullet lives up to its name, travelling with speed and precision. Its ultra-metallic Brewster Silver Paint is a vibrant nod to the epic trails cars of the past, such as the Silver Dawn, Silver King, Silver Silence and Silver Spectre.
The four-seat Rolls-Royce Drophead is transformed into an adaptable two-seat roadster, by the addition of a rakish Aero Cowling with vapour-blasted titanium finisher, heightening the Collection’s sense of speed and purpose.
Launched in 2020, Dawn Silver Bullet is a contemporary interpretation of the classic roadster spirit and driving experience, offering committed drivers a sublime blend of serenity and sophistication with an exhilarating sense of uncompromised freedom.
Dawn Silver Bullet is strictly limited to just 50 examples worldwide.
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