Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, regarded by many as the worlds foremost luxury motoring marque celebrated their fifth successive sales record with over 4000 cars delivered to customers in 2014. We look back at this spectacular year showing our personal highlights.
08/01/14 – Ghost V-Specification unveiled
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars announces the launch of Ghost V-Specification; a limited series of Ghost and Ghost Extended Wheelbase motor cars that was available for customers to commission from January to June 2014. At the heart of the Ghost’s driving experience is its hallmark V12 engine. Acceleration is delivered with a characteristic immediacy and smoothness, propelling occupants from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.7 seconds with 80% of power available from idle. This unique powertrain is celebrated with a 30bhp / 22kw power increase on all Ghost V-Specification motor cars. Elegantly applied design touches hint at Ghost V-Specification’s inherent dynamism. V-Specification motif coachlines finish the exterior paint-scheme whilst customers can either choose from five specially selected exterior colours, or from Rolls-Royce’s 44,000 hue palette. Optional visible chrome exhausts and 21” part-polished wheels add further expression to the car’s dynamic promise.
11/02/2014 – Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Istanbul celebrates opening
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Istanbul opened the new home of Rolls-Royce in Turkey. The dealership, which forms part of Royal Motors, and the British manufacturer of super-luxury automobiles, commemorated the occasion with a prestigious event for customers and friends of the brand in the evening. The new facility offers the most discerning clientele in Turkey direct access to Rolls-Royce sales and aftersales services. Customer deliveries of the latest addition to the portfolio, Wraith – the most powerful Rolls-Royce in history – began in December 2013 and demand for the company’s Phantom and Ghost continues to increase. At the opening, Rolls-Royce leather specialist Elias Abdo and wood specialist Tom Peters from the manufacturing plant at Goodwood provided insights into traditional craftsmanship and the unlimited range of Bespoke personalisation options available for customers from the new showroom.
04/03/2014 – At 2014 Geneva Salon, Ghost Series II in unveiled to the world.
Ghost Series II delivers the latest industry-leading technology from Rolls-Royce clad in a subtle re-design. It exudes the timeless yet cool, modern luxury that the car’s customers – the Captains of Industry, entrepreneurs and successful business men and women who are the wealth and job creators in our economies –demand. The launch of Ghost Series II consolidates Ghost’s position as the most popular car in the €200,000+ class, and as a cornerstone of Rolls-Royce’s continuing success. Inside, Ghost Series II delivers on its outward appearance. The ultimate contemporary combination of luxury, technology and connectivity available to the successful entrepreneur on the move today, Ghost Series II’s on-board technology ensures it is an oasis of calm in a busy, connected world where he or she can do business in peace. In short, Ghost remains the ultimate choice for successful entrepreneurs around the world and the calmest place from which to run their successful enterprises on the move.
20/03/2014 – Inside Rolls-Royce documentary airs on Channel 4
Filmed over a landmark six-month period for the marque, Inside Rolls-Royce captures the extraordinary lengths Rolls-Royce’s dedicated and passionate workforce goes into creating and presenting the world’s finest motor cars. The film tracks the crafting of the Celestial Phantom – the most valuable Bespoke Rolls-Royce ever created. The extraordinary feat of hand-setting 446 diamonds into the car’s interior serves to display Rolls-Royce’s hallmark attention-to-detail. Alex Innes, a Bespoke Designer, was one of the key characters featured in the show. Alex has created Bespoke designs for discerning Rolls-Royce clientele for the last five years, since graduating from Coventry University with a BA (Hons) in Automotive Design. Over the years, Alex has collaborated on exclusive special collections, developed unique features and worked with some of Rolls-Royce’s most creative customers around the world.
08/04/2014 – Jenson Button Flies the Flag
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars announced that Formula One World Champion Jenson Button will drive the marque’s pinnacle range of motor cars during the 2014 Formula One season. Jenson has selected a number of the iconic car company’s models including Wraith, Phantom Drophead Coupé and Ghost to transport him in style for ten of this year’s Grands Prix.
As a long time admirer of the marque, Jenson will enjoy the best of British luxury whilst travelling abroad this season.
Jenson Button, Formula One World Champion said, “I am absolutely delighted to be accompanied by the very best in British luxury as I travel the world this year. I especially look forward to driving Wraith, a fantastic addition to the Rolls-Royce fleet and quite simply a stunning car to look at and drive.”
18/04/2014: The Pinnacle Travel Phantom debuts at Beijing Motor Show
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars unveils the Pinnacle Travel Phantom, a new Bespoke Collection motor car, at the Beijing Motor Show. The car has been conceived both to celebrate the Chinese love of travel and the success of the Bespoke programme in China. Pinnacle Travel Phantom serves as a showcase for the imaginative heights of craftsmanship, design and excellence that emanate from the Bespoke design studios at the Home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood, England, seen through the prism of modern luxury travel. Answering this growing interest in luxury travel, the Rolls-Royce Pinnacle Travel Phantom offers a luxuriant colour palette, opulent, sumptuous materials and the most complex, beautifully hand-crafted marquetry ever seen in a Rolls-Royce, evoking the experience of travelling on luxurious cross- continental trains.
06/05/2014: Rolls-Royce celebrates 110 years of excellence
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars celebrated a seminal moment in British automotive history on Sunday 4 May. Charles Rolls and Henry Royce met for the first time on this date exactly 110 years ago and agreed to form the company that would become synonymous with the very best. Celebrations took place at the Goodwood Motor Circuit in West Sussex and at The Midland Hotel, Manchester. Three very special contemporary Rolls-Royce motor cars – Wraith, Phantom Coupé and Ghost – were displayed at the ‘Supercar Sunday’ Breakfast Club meeting at the Goodwood Motor Circuit, a short distance from the company’s Head Office and Manufacturing Plant. The cars were hosted by a team of Rolls-Royce employees. The event was the largest in the history of the Breakfast Club, with 1000 cars on display inside the circuit and more than 14,000 visitors.
23/05/2014: Phantom Drophead Coupé Waterspeed Collection makes European debut
The Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupé Waterspeed Collection arrives at its spiritual home in the Italian lakes for its European debut. Stealing the show on the opening day of the Concorso d’Eleganza at Villa d’Este on the shores of Lake Como, Waterspeed was designed to celebrate Sir Malcolm Campbell’s act of setting a new world water-speed record on the nearby Lake Maggiore in 1937. It was on the morning of 1 September 1937 that Campbell established his legend, setting a world-record speed of 126.33mph in the famous Bluebird K3 boat powered by a Rolls-Royce R- Engine.The following day he went one better, piloting his craft to 129.5mph, emphatically breaking the United States’ five-year stranglehold on the world water-speed record. Campbell’s momentous achievement captured the world’s attention and reaffirmed the Rolls-Royce R-engines’ record-breaking superiority after triumphs on land and in the air. Celebrating this incredible act of British ‘Derring-Do’, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars’ Bespoke department has created the Waterspeed Collection, consisting of 35 specially designed Phantom Drophead Coupés, the first of which is displayed at Villa d’Este.
25/06/2014: Rolls-Royce Motor Cars unleash the Speed at Goodwood
Rolls-Royce enjoyed a successful Goodwood Festival of Speed. The highlights included: Wraith. The ultimate gentlemen’s gran turismo, Wraith effortlessly ascended the famous Goodwood Hillclimb during the Supercar Run. The most powerful and dynamic Rolls-Royce in history, Wraith completed the 1.16-mile course in under 60 seconds and reached 144 mph as the car accelerated past Goodwood House. Wraith was driven by Festival favourite, Justin Law. Ghost Series II. Making its first UK public appearance at this year’s Festival of Speed, Ghost Series II was seen in action on the Hillclimb in the First Glance category. The car was driven by professional race car instructor and world-ranked drifting champion, Tim Marshall-Rowe. Ghost Series II will be available to customers later this year. Course Car. The Course Director’s car this year was a Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupé, resplendent with race lights and Goodwood decals. The car was seen at speed between each Hillclimb Run throughout the weekend. The Fleet. The largest fleet of Rolls-Royce motor cars ever seen in the UK wafted around the Goodwood area during the Festival of Speed, with invited VIP guests being conveyed in luxury from the Home of Rolls-Royce on the south-eastern corner of the Goodwood Estate.
03/07/2014: Rolls-Royce Motor Cars opens innovative summer studio
Adding to the success of the Rolls-Royce Studio in Cannes on the Cote d’Azur in 2013, in the summer 0f 2014, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars welcomed guests both to Cannes and a second ‘Summer Studio’ at the exclusive enclave of Porto Cervo on the Costa Smeralda in Sardinia, Italy. This unique brand experience centre offers Rolls-Royce’s guests an insight into the world of the iconic marque in a relaxed club atmosphere in the most innovative and effortless of manners. The ‘Studio’ was created to showcase the Wraith, Ghost, Phantom and Phantom Drophead Coupé, offering guests the opportunity either to learn about the cars through a static display in luxury surroundings redolent of Goodwood, or to drive them on the roads of Costa Smeralda. Visitors to the ‘Studio’ were also given the exclusive opportunity to see the Phantom Drophead Coupé ‘Waterspeed’ Collection car, of which only 35 exist.
23/07/2014: Rolls-Royce celebrates Scout success
The company celebrated the success of local 1st Barnham Scouts, following the opening of a second troop to meet demand. With the Home of Rolls-Royce at Goodwood just down the road, the scouts drew inspiration from the company’s two model families and named the new troops 1st Barnham Phantom and 1st Barnham Ghost. Rolls-Royce was delighted to host the troops for a tour of the company’s manufacturing plant and head office and the opportunity for a close inspection of Phantom, Ghost and Wraith models. The scouts were welcomed to Rolls-Royce by Scouting Ambassador and inspirational adversity champion, Phil Packer MBE. 1st Barnham Scouts recently celebrated its 40th anniversary and currently has 130 children and 30 leaders in the group. The Scout Group offers varied and exciting programmes for boys and girls between the ages of six and 14½ years and consists of two Beaver Colonies, two Cub Packs and two Scout Troops. There are currently 45 scouts and the numbers are expected to continue to rise.
12/08/2014: Wraith debuts in Forza Motorsport 5 for Xbox One
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, the epitome of luxury, made its video game debut. Wraith, the most powerful and dynamic Rolls-Royce in history, exclusively in Forza Motorsport 5 for Xbox One. Available to all owners of Forza Motorsport 5 as a free download, Rolls-Royce Wraith allows players to drive, explore and experience the super-luxury vehicle in unprecedented visual realism. Developed by Turn 10 Studios, Forza Motorsport 5 features an all-new graphics engine, created exclusively for Xbox One, delivering physically based material rendering that re-creates the real-life characteristics of thousands of unique materials. Coach doors open to reveal a sumptuous contemporary interior complete with expanses of wood and leather detailing, looking real enough to touch. The marque’s sweeping fastback design appears complete with a Bespoke Starlight Headliner consisting of over 1,340 fibre optic lamps, creating a star-studded interior, allowing players to drive in the ultimate style. 624bhp derived from the car’s 6.6 litre twin-turbo V12 engine is delivered effortlessly courtesy of Satellite Aided Transmission, a cutting-edge technology that marries the car’s gearbox to GPS data to ensure Wraith is always in the correct gear, therefore poised to deliver its abundant power.
15/09/2014: Rolls-Royce Motor Cars celebrated a record Goodwood Revival
The local manufacturer of super-luxury motor cars hosted customers, prospects and VIPs and also entertained the thousands of visitors to the world’s most popular historic motor race meeting in true Rolls‑Royce style. The Rolls-Royce Hooper’s building at the March Motor Works presented an authentic recreation of a trim shop from the Revival period. Hooper & Co were a British coachbuilding company synonymous with the marque, with an association dating from 1909. Revival guests were greeted by craftsmen and women – all employees of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars – ‘working’ in the trim shop, and were able to closely examine the attention to detail that has hallmarked Rolls-Royce workmanship from the outset of the company. Outside the Hooper’s building, a handsome 1953 Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith Dedanca de Ville with ‘Empress’ style coachwork was displayed. The car was originally specified with an electric division, electric windows and air conditioning, all of which are still fully functioning. The original owner was known to prefer his chauffeur to drive in a brisk style, and the rear division features a speedometer to allow the gentleman to monitor progress from the rear compartment. Rolls-Royce was represented on the Motor Circuit throughout the event, with a beautiful 1961 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud II Four Door Cabriolet in Smoke Green, with bodywork by H.J. Mulliner, forming part of the Course Director’s entourage. Special guests of the Company were conveyed in period luxury, with the silence of the ‘magic carpet ride’ only marginally disturbed by the ticking of the clock. The car is the only model of its type in the world and was very kindly loaned for the occasion by a customer of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.
16/09/2014: Stephen Hung orders largest ever fleet of Rolls-Royce Phantoms
Luxury entrepreneur Stephen Hung purchased the largest Rolls-Royce Phantom fleet in the world, placing an order for 30 Bespoke Extended Wheelbase Phantoms for his Louis XIII hotel in Macau. This transaction represents the world’s single largest order of Rolls-Royces’ ever. Two of the fleet will be the most expensive Rolls- Royce Phantoms ever commissioned. The deal was formalised on 16th September 2014 at a signing ceremony at the Home of Rolls‑Royce at Goodwood in West Sussex, England. The signing ceremony was attended by Rolls-Royce CEO, Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes, Louis XIII Chairman, Stephen Hung, the Board of Rolls- Royce Motor Cars, Louis XIII executives and a representative from Graff Diamonds. Each of the 30 Rolls-Royces has been extensively customised by Rolls-Royce’s Bespoke design team at Goodwood working hand-in-hand with Mr Hung and Louis XIII to create truly distinctive vehicles
02/10/204: The debut of the Phantom Metropolitan Collection
The Phantom Metropolitan Collection, was unveiled at the Mondial de L’Automobile in Paris, featuring exquisite hand-crafted design inspired by the modern metropolis. Just 20 of these beautifully crafted motor cars are available to commission. The Phantom Metropolitan Collection pays homage to the world’s great metropolises through the meticulous application of marquetry – the art of inlaying small pieces of wood veneer to form decorative motifs. When open, Phantom’s signature picnic table presents occupants with an elevated view of the city, created through the expert application of 500 individual wood veneer pieces. Indeed, the process of hand-cutting, colouring, shaping and applying is so complex these unique objects d’art take an expert wood craftsperson several days to complete. On closing the tables, a different perspective of the cityscape is offered – reflecting the view one gets when effortlessly travelling in the rear of a Phantom.
13/11/2014: Inside Rolls-Royce opens its doors to the public
Inside Rolls-Royce treated guests to an unexpected multi-sensory journey through the marque’s world-renowned engineering, design and craftsmanship, providing new levels of insight into the remarkable lengths required to create the world’s pinnacle super-luxury motor car. Combining the latest technologies and design, Inside Rolls-Royce delivers an engaging, interactive experience. Exhibits will be brought to life on visitors’ smartphones and tablets using the latest iBeacon technology. Loan devices will also be available so that nobody misses out. Guests will enjoy a taste of the enormous scope for personalisation afforded to every Rolls-Royce customer through the marque’s pinnacle Bespoke programme. Each of the nine rooms at Saatchi Gallery focused on one key aspect in the creation of a Rolls-Royce motor car.
01/12/204: Rolls-Royce Motor Cars seeks record number of apprentices
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars announces that the company is seeking a record number of candidates for its 2015 Apprenticeship Programme. 16 places are available, the highest number of annual apprenticeships since the programme launched in 2006. The Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Apprenticeship Programme provides people aged 16-24 with the opportunity to train with the Goodwood-based manufacturer of the world’s best-selling super-luxury cars. The apprenticeships last for up to four years and combine on-the-job training with class room-based studying for nationally recognised qualifications. The programme has been designed in conjunction with several local colleges. The selection process is designed to guarantee recruitment of the very best candidates who have the opportunity to develop with the company following a successful apprenticeship period. The successful applicants will join the programme in September 2015, working alongside skilled craftspeople in leather, wood, paint, engineering and assembly roles. There are currently more than 40 men and women in active apprenticeships at the Home of Rolls-Royce at Goodwood, West Sussex.
By Paul Godbold (MCIJ)