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McLaren’s first open cockpit road car – Say hello to Elva

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McLaren Automotive reveals its new Ultimate Series roadster, the McLaren Elva. It is the brand’s first open-cockpit road car. Like its McLaren P1, McLaren Senna and Speedtail predecessors, numbers of the new McLaren Elva will be limited to 399 examples.

  • McLaren Automotive acquires rights to the Elva name for new Ultimate Series roadster
  • Open-cockpit two-seater celebrates Bruce McLaren-designed 1960s McLaren-Elva sportscars that embody McLaren’s pioneering design and engineering principles
  • The lightest road car ever from McLaren Automotive, with bespoke carbon fibre chassis and body, unique carbon fibre seats and sintered carbon ceramic brakes
  • Unparalleled driver engagement and Ultimate driving enjoyment, with absence of roof, windscreen and windows ensuring incredibly immersive and enthralling experience
  • McLaren Active Air Management System (AAMS) is a world-first; shelters occupants by manipulating air flow while retaining their connection to the elements
  • Homologated for all major markets; fixed windscreen derivative also available
  • New and unique McLaren ‘blurred boundaries’ design principle sees carbon fibre bodywork wrapping into the open-air cabin as exterior flows into the interior
  • Performance from 815PS, twin-turbocharged McLaren V8: 0-100km/h in under three seconds; 0-200km/h quicker than the McLaren Senna, at just 6.7 seconds
  • Innovative Inconel and titanium quad-exit exhaust delivers unique soundtrack; enhances engine power by reducing back pressure
  • McLaren expertise in vehicle dynamics showcased: active aerodynamics; state-of-the-art, linked-hydraulic active suspension; electro-hydraulic steering for purest feedback
  • Just 399 examples of new McLaren Elva available to customer order, from £1,425,000 including UK VAT. Final price will depend on level of personalisation by McLaren Special Operations (MSO)

World-first aero protection
McLaren innovates a world-first, the Active Air Management System (AAMS) to enhance driving pleasure. The system channels air through the nose of the Elva to come out of the front clamshell at high velocity ahead of the occupants before being directed up over the cockpit to create a relative ‘bubble’ of calm. The system comprises a large central inlet situated above the splitter, a front clamshell outlet vent and a discreet carbon fibre deflector that raises and lowers vertically; when the AAMS is active, the deflector is deployed at the leading edge of the bonnet outlet, rising 150mm into the freestream to create a low-pressure zone at the vent.

The vented air is directed through a 130-degree radius, using a network of transverse and longitudinally mounted carbon fibre vanes across the bonnet outlet; distributing the airflow both in front of and along the side of the cabin further assists air management in the cabin environment. At urban speeds, when the level of airflow into the cabin means the AAMS is not needed, the system is inactive. As vehicle speed increases, the AAMS automatically deploys and remains active until speed reduces, at which point the deflector retracts. The system can also be button-deactivated by the driver.

A view of the McLaren Elva Roadster dashboard
A curtain of air system is used to protect passengers from the wind. Credit: McLaren

Aesthetic and technical design in harmony
The AAMS is an example of the results of a harmonious approach, being perfectly integrated within the aerodynamic and cooling functionality of the McLaren Elva.

When the AAMS is inactive, the central duct is sealed, diverting air flow into the low-temperature radiators and increasing their cooling efficiency. To provide optimal packaging conditions for the AAMS, the McLaren Elva features twin low-temperature radiators (LTRs) positioned ahead of each front wheel. The new cores used in these LTRs contribute to the engine’s 815PS power output by reducing charge air temperature and also cool the oil in the seven-speed seamless shift transmission.

In addition to housing the AAMS, the front clamshell features deep contours that guide air into a discreet duct in the leading edge of each carbon fibre door – notably the lightest that McLaren has ever created. This captured cooling air is then directed into the two rear-mounted, powertrain-cooling, high-temperature radiators (HTRs) located just ahead of the rear wheels. A second, lower duct that starts inside the front wheelarch also channels air through the bodyside to the HTRs, which are additionally fed through the visible main side intakes. Intakes on the rear of each buttress channel combustion air into exposed air filters under the tonneau, which feed the carbon fibre engine plenum.

The trailing edge of the bodywork features a full-width active rear spoiler, the height and angle of which are adjusted simultaneously to optimise aero balance. Airbrake functionality improves braking from high speeds, the range of operation varying according to whether the AAMS is active. The rear diffuser works in conjunction with the active rear spoiler. The McLaren Elva has a completely flat underfloor until the point by the rear axle at which the diffuser starts and increases in height to accelerate air out from under the vehicle. The diffuser features vertical ‘fences’ to guide the airflow without reducing the air evacuation path and these combine with the rear bumper side extensions to further improve the aerodynamic efficiency.

Elva features a full-width active rear spoiler. Credit: McLaren

Designed to deliver an elemental driving experience
“Our mission with the McLaren Elva was to create an open-cockpit, two-seat roadster that delivers the most elemental of driving experiences. Formula 1-inspired shrink-wrapped volumes create a technical sculpture that is as striking as it is remarkable, the exterior flowing into the interior in a stunning example of a new and unique McLaren ‘blurred boundaries’ design principle that has allowed us to seamlessly bring the outside in, to further enhance driver engagement while remaining true to our philosophy of making no compromises.”
Rob Melville, Design Director, McLaren Automotive

Highlighting the intensity of the driving experience through the direct connection to the elements, there is no clear demarcation between the exterior of the McLaren Elva and the interior. The uppermost sections of the carbon fibre doors simply curve over and flow down into the cabin, the light, stiff and strong composite material providing the perfect properties to form such enticing shapes and forms. Complementing this unique design feature, the buttresses behind the driver and passenger also flow into the cabin behind the seats. While ensuring the driver and passenger remain exposed to the elements, the sculpture of the wraparound upper cabin environment enhances the feeling of security and protection within a cocooned interior.

McLaren Elva Roadster Interior View
Carbon Fibre extensively used in Elva’s interior help to make it McLaren’s lightest roadcar. Credit: McLaren

A spar of carbon fibre additionally sweeps down from between the buttresses and runs between the driver and passenger seats to support a central armrest and cradle the engine start button and the controls for Drive, Neutral and Reverse functions. The seats themselves are of a bespoke design, with a new lightweight carbon fibre shell that not only supports the head, shoulder and back area of the occupants, but works seamlessly with the upper shape of the cabin. The lower area of each seat is marginally shorter than a conventional McLaren seat, allowing enough space within the footwells for driver or passenger to stand should they want to in order to enter or leave the vehicle. The seats are available with different upper and lower colours and materials, creating a contrast between the exposed upper section and cocooned lower section. Six-point race harnesses can be selected should the customer wish to use the McLaren Elva on track.

Ahead of the driver and passenger, the view forward is unprecedented, with the dashboard seamlessly flowing down into the cabin and around to meet the swooping doors. The shapes are organic and natural, almost pebble-like, with the only interruption to their smooth forms the instrument cluster that stands proud, moving with the steering wheel to optimise visibility of vehicle data for the driver.

In a first for McLaren, the controls for the Active Dynamics functions are integrated into the instrument cluster; set either side of the binnacle, the dynamic mode switches are situated close to the gearshift paddles and their operation does not require the driver to remove their hands from the steering wheel. Additional functionality is accessed through the centrally-mounted 8-inch high-resolution touchscreen monitor; a hub for all the vehicle’s functions, this brand-new interface features an edgeless-glass screen and a side-mounted control dial. This Central Infotainment Screen has been developed to allow the driver to run multiple applications simultaneously, akin to a smartphone, flicking through them on a vertical carousel. The system shows a range of applications on the screen, including satellite navigation, McLaren Track Telemetry, rear-view camera and climate control. The screen is mounted on a lightweight carbon fibre arm and tilted towards the driver.

Stowage space is offered beneath the rear tonneau. Crafted from carbon fibre, the curving single-piece panel is operated manually and secured with soft-close latches. Elegant and lightweight, it further reduces weight at one of the highest points of the McLaren Elva. The compartment under the tonneau has space for helmets and also houses the porthole-like panels that showcase the two visible air filters – a fine example of the McLaren design principle of exposing functional engineering.

A portfolio of bespoke interior materials will be available for the new McLaren Elva, allowing customers to personalise their car according to its intended use. Interior leathers in a range of finishes and levels of protection – including an Enhanced Full Aniline leather with a second protective layer to the leather – have been developed to meet the requirements of the open-cockpit car. Additionally, a new technical interior material, Ultrafabric, is another innovation for the car. This breathable synthetic material offers a very different proposition to leather; comprising four layers, the outer two surfaces providing durability and moisture resistance and the inner layers adding a reinforced rayon-fibre base and cushioning, the Ultrafabric helps to ‘grip’ you in the seat.

The McLaren Elva does not have an audio system as standard (in line with the determination to minimise vehicle weight) but customers can specify a bespoke system at no additional cost. Further non-cost options include 5-Spoke Super-Lightweight forged alloy wheels in lieu of the 10-Spoke Ultra-lightweight wheels fitted as standard; track-focused Pirelli P Zero™ Corsa tyres rather than Pirelli P Zero™ tyres; and a vehicle lift system.

Additional personalisation options available through McLaren Special Operations (MSO), the bespoke division of McLaren, include interior colour choices for the Ultrafabric and leathers; virtually limitless exterior paint colours and almost anything else between a delicate pin-stripe on the wheels and a blended full-body ‘contour’ or ‘velocity’ finish that mixes multiple colours across the length of the vehicle. Any selection is individually hand-painted by MSO’s highly experienced craftspeople.

Alternatively, customers can select a Gloss Visual Carbon Fibre Body, which exposes not only the carbon fibre body panels, but also the perfectly aligned twill of the composite material. This can be further enhanced with a range of colour tints. McLaren Special Operations can also develop a bespoke tint for the exterior or interior carbon fibre.

The McLaren Elva can also be personalised with 18ct white gold or platinum badges that feature a TPT inlay. An automotive world-first when introduced on the McLaren Speedtail, thin-ply technology carbon (or TPT for short) is formed from multiple ultra-thin carbon layers just 30 microns in depth. Positioned at a 45-degree angle, when gently milled they expose a stratified, shimmering surface that resembles flowing water. Additionally, MSO offers a 24ct gold engine bay heat shield.

The new Ultimate Series McLaren is priced from £1,425,000 including UK VAT, the final specification is determined by customer choice, with infinite possibilities in terms of personalisation by McLaren Special Operations (MSO) to ensure each Elva is unique.

An extraordinary amount of customising is available with the Elva. Credit: McLaren

Ultimate, immersive performance
“The McLaren Elva is a true Ultimate roadster; it exists purely for the pleasure of driving, to deliver an enthralling and immersive experience born from the ultimate connection between the car, the driver and the elements. The lightest road car we’ve ever built at McLaren Automotive, the Elva is incredibly agile and ferociously fast, its 815PS twin-turbocharged V8 engine providing breathtaking performance that heightens every sense. “
Andy Palmer, Vehicle Line Director – Ultimate Series, McLaren Automotive

The core of the McLaren Elva is – as with every McLaren road or race car since 1981 – a carbon fibre monocoque. This state-of-the-art ‘tub’ is incredibly strong and stiff, and its inherent properties mean an open-top roadster does not require any additional strengthening as would be the case with a vehicle built from aluminium or steel. Conversely, despite its rigidity, carbon fibre is also incredibly light, helping to reduce the overall vehicle weight.

To that effect carbon fibre has also been used extensively throughout the McLaren Elva. The entire body is carbon, and McLaren has pushed the limits of the material to not only create incredible sculpted forms, but to also reduce weight. The front clamshell, for instance, is just 1.2mm thick and meets all of McLaren’s structural integrity targets – yet it forms an astonishing one-piece panel that wraps around the entire nose of the vehicle and provides a clean, uninterrupted vision without any panel joins. Perhaps even more impressive are the body side panels, which are each over three metres long and stretch from the front wheels, past the side intakes, around the rear tonneau cover and all the way until the active rear spoiler.

Each door is constructed entirely of carbon fibre and features a single-hinge design, mounting to the vehicle just behind the front clamshell. The doors operate in a Dihedral function, a McLaren trademark. The floor within the McLaren Elva is exposed carbon fibre, once again highlighting the weight saving throughout. Practicality is enhanced with the use of non-slip material at selective points, or bespoke floor mats if preferred.

Carbon, too, forms the core of the braking system which is the most advanced ever fitted to a McLaren road car. Each sintered carbon ceramic disc measures 390mm and takes significantly longer to produce than a conventional carbon ceramic disc, but the resultant material is much stronger and has improved thermal conductivity. This allows the front brake discs in particular to be reduced in size, benefitting unsprung mass while still maintaining performance. Cooling requirements are lessened, reducing the brake ducting needed, which further reduces weight and improves aerodynamic efficiency. The braking system was first introduced on the McLaren Senna but is enhanced for the Elva with the addition of titanium caliper pistons which save a total of 1kg across the vehicle.

Such braking performance is essential because of the performance delivered by the 815PS, 800Nm 4.0-litre, twin-turbocharged McLaren V8 that powers the Elva. From the same family of engines that powers the McLaren Senna and Senna GTR, it features a flat-plane crankshaft, dry-sump lubrication and lightweight connecting camshafts, rods and pistons that reduce mass in the powertrain. Power is directed to the rear wheels through a seven-speed seamless-shift gearbox, and working in conjunction with a launch control function, the performance is breathtaking: 100km/h from a standstill (0-62mph) is reached in less than three seconds, while the McLaren Elva is quicker than the McLaren Senna to 200km/h (0-124mph) at just 6.7 seconds2.

the McLaren Elva is quicker than the McLaren Senna to 200km/h. Credit: McLaren

The increased power output is achieved through an optimised exhaust system with reduced back pressure and improved LTR performance that reduces charge air temperatures. The exhaust itself is an intricate and lightweight titanium and Inconel system, with two lower exits flanking a twin top-mounted exit. In a first for a McLaren road car, the titanium exhaust finisher is created using 3D printing technology to form the unique shape. The exhaust note of the Elva is clean, crisp and unmistakably powerful, as befits an Ultimate Series McLaren.

The power of the McLaren Elva is complemented by a chassis set-up that maximises agility and driver engagement and feedback, enhancing the incredibly immersive and enthralling driving experience. Electro-hydraulic steering provides the purest feedback, as expected of a car when the open-cockpit design positions the driver so close to the elements. State-of-the-art McLaren linked-hydraulic fully active suspension offers a staggering breadth of ability on all road surfaces, with both unique software settings and bespoke springs and damper valving matched to the extremely light overall vehicle weight.

Accessed through the Adaptive Dynamics Controls, the Comfort, Sport and Track modes for the handling and powertrain change the driving characteristics to suit driver mood or environment. Those wishing to explore the full performance of the Elva can adjust the level of available wheelspin and oversteer with three Electronic Stability Control (ESC) modes or utilise Variable Drift Control (VDC). Unique to McLaren, VDC unlocks new levels of driving freedom and excitement. Track-focused Pirelli P Zero™ Corsa tyres are available as a non-cost option.

The original McLaren Elva M1A and the new McLaren Elva face off. Credit: McLaren

McLaren M1A: superlight success designed and engineered by Bruce McLaren
Designed by Bruce McLaren, the McLaren M1A was superlight, weighing just 551kg (1,215lbs) with a lightweight but very rigid and strong chassis – in this case a tubular steel spaceframe. Made using both round and square section tubes, the chassis was reinforced with magnesium alloy sheeting, bonded and riveted in place as a stressed undertray.

A 340bhp Oldsmobile 4.5-litre V8 was mid-mounted. Suspension was cutting-edge for the mid-1960s: fully independent, with unequal length wishbones, anti-roll bar and adjustable coil springs and shock absorbers at the front and reversed lower wishbones with similar coil springs at the rear.

The moulded resin bodywork – again light in weight – was visually very distinctive, with the M1A and McLaren-Elva M1A [Mk I] both having a pointed nose and absence of any lip at the rear. The styling of the later McLaren-Elva M1B [Mk II] and M1C [Mk III] was more muscular, but from the outset the cooling ducts and side fuel tanks integrated into the design were laying down the principles of ‘form follows function’ and ‘everything for a reason’ to which McLaren still rigorously adheres.

When the M1A raced in September 1964 at the Canadian Sports Car Grand Prix – the forerunner to the famous Canadian-American (Can-Am) Challenge Cup that McLaren drivers won for five consecutive years from 1967 to 1971 – it took third place overall but was the fastest car on the circuit, equalling the lap-record four times and breaking it seven more.

Demand for customer cars after such an impressive showing was immediate, but with just seven employees at McLaren – all of whom were engaged in building team racing cars – the only solution was to outsource production. Frank Nichols of Elva Cars Ltd, a small, specialist sportscar manufacturer based in Sussex, UK, proposed that he would build replica versions of the M1A and in November 1964, McLaren and Elva’s parent company agreed terms to proceed.

The McLaren Elva has history. Credit: McLaren

The McLaren-Elva M1A [Mk I] developed into the McLaren-Elva M1B [Mk II] and then the McLaren-Elva M1C [Mark III], the cars competing in privateer hands while in parallel the status of the McLaren brand grew as it moved towards becoming a major force in top-level motorsport.

The McLaren-Elva M1B [Mk II] attracted the attention of American automotive magazine Road & Track, which in July 1966, declared it, ‘the fastest car we’ve ever tested (and) an example of the latest thinking in sports/racing cars.”  The final iteration of the series, the McLaren-Elva M1C [Mk III], was introduced in 1967, by which time the McLaren works team had moved into a new era with the M6A.

We are delighted to have gained the rights to the Elva name for an extraordinary new roadster that adds a new dimension to the McLaren Ultimate Series while tracing its lineage back to the sportscars that laid the foundations for McLaren’s success. The McLaren-Elva M1A [Mk I] and its immediate successors not only set standards on the track but also established the pioneering design and engineering principles that remain at the heart of our brand; what better way to celebrate that than by bringing the Elva name right up to date.”
Mike Flewitt, CEO, McLaren Automotive

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Customer deliveries of the McLaren Elva are scheduled to begin towards the end of 2020.

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Luxury Cars

Rick Hendrick pays $3 Million instead of $59,995 for the first C8 Corvette

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Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction sets the record with the auction of the first production 2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe fetching $3 Million USD.
Rick Hendrick purchases Chevrolet Corvette C8 VIN 001 Barrett Jackson Auction 2020
A Black Chevrolet C8 Corvette is what Hendrick will eventually receive. Credit: Barrett-Jackson

Over the years the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction has become a destination for buyers seeking to own a first production vehicle. The yearly auction has a tradition of offering first editions of new performance cars for charity. On Saturday January 18, at the 49th annual event, the rights to own the first-ever retail 2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe VIN #0001 (Lot #3007), donated by General Motors (GM), went up for grabs.

GM CEO, Marry Barra, welcomed a packed house as bidders vied for the chance to own the black-on-black C8 Corvette loaded with every available option. The Red version of the car at auction was just a placeholder for the black one (VIN #001) that was being bid on, with the first offer starting strong at $200,000 USD. The final price hammered in at $3 million and the money raised given to the Detroit Children’s Fund (DCF) – a non-profit that supports Detroit’s schools.

2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe Interior
Interior spec render of a Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe. Credit: General Motors

“Reaction to the mid-engine Corvette was incredible,” said Barra, who was on the block to introduce the first production mid-engine Corvette. “It’s both humbling and exciting to harness that success and support the local community through the Detroit Children’s Fund.”

The lucky buyer was none other than Rick Hendrick, the collector and owner of NASCAR team Hendrick Motorsports, and co-owner of JR Motorsports, founder of the Hendrick Automotive Group and the Hendrick Marrow Program, who last year paid $2.5 million for a 2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition at the same auction.

“I am the number one Corvette junkie in the world,” said 70-year-old Hendrick in a press release from GM. “Thanks to Chevrolet and Barrett-Jackson, because they always pick charities that are so good and help so many people.”

Rick Hendrick with the $3 Million cheque  for the Detroit Children's fund
Rick Hendrick with the $3 Million cheque for the Detroit Children’s fund. Credit General Motors

Rick Hendrick received the keys from General Motors’ CEO, Mary Barra, at the completion of the auction. The VIN #0001 Chevrolet Corvette Hendrick will receive has the 3LT trim loaded with all available options. It will come with a black exterior, black seats with red trim, red seatbelts, GT2 seats, removable roof panel, and rear spoiler. There’s also a performance data recorder and Z51 performance package.

The 2020 C8 Corvette is markedly different to previous Corvettes with it being the first model to feature an engine behind the driver instead of under the hood. The new Corvette also recently won at the Oscars of the auto industry and was named the North American Car of the Year by a jury of automotive journalists.

The winning $3 Million bid entitles Hendrick the option of taking delivery of his new coupe at the Corvette plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky. He also gets a hosted tour at the Corvette Museum, a Letter of Authenticity, and a unique artwork.

Rick Hendrick also obtains artwork and memorabilia with the winning bid
Rick Hendrick also obtains artwork and other memorabilia with the winning bid. Credit: General Motors

“Charity vehicles are the soul of our auctions,” said Craig Jackson, chairman and CEO of Barrett-Jackson. “Supporting the community was the purpose of the first event my family helped create almost 50 years ago. Over the years, we’ve supported medical research, funded education initiatives and provided money for programs that champion our nation’s military heroes and first responders.

This year’s auction also saw a 1981 Jeep CJ7 Custom SUV (Lot #3001) sold and re-donated on the block three times for a total of $425,000 raised to benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation. Special guest 13-year-old Make-A-Wish recipient, Will Wade, fulfilled his wish by accompanying Craig Jackson on the block and hammering in the final sale of the Jeep.

1981 Jeep redonated multiple times at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction 2020
1981 Jeep re-donated multiple times at the auction. Credit: Barrett-Jackson

 “There’s not a group of people more united in the drive to eradicate sickness, improve education and support our nation’s veterans than the collector car community,” said Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson. “We’re so honored to be trusted by the world’s top car companies and consignors to help carry their missions of helping others. We take our stewardship of these charity cars very seriously and we’re grateful to have played a part in raising over $7 million dollars for these extremely worthy causes during our 2020 Scottsdale Auction.”

“All children deserve great schools,” said Jack Elsey, DCF’s executive director. “The proceeds from this auction will help improve public education in Detroit and, as a result, give thousands of young Detroiters a brighter future. We cannot thank General Motors enough for their commitment to DCF and the children of Detroit.”

The 2020 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Stingray Coupe was also the most expensive charity car sold at the week-long auction.

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The cars and numbers behind the new Rolls-Royce record

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Last year the Rolls-Royce team created more bespoke cars than ever before in the marque’s history.
Rolls Royce Wraith Eagle VIII cabin interior
Inside the Rolls Royce Wraith Eagle VIII. Credit: Rolls-Royce

2019 was an incredibly big year for the Rolls-Royce Bespoke Collective. For one, Rolls-Royce completed a record 5152 motor cars, the most in it’s 116 year history. Secondly, almost every one of those cars was tailored by the Bespoke Collective, a team that is made up of Rolls-Royce engineers, designers and craftspeople that reside at the home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood, England.

You could safely say that all and every one of Rolls-Royce’s customers would have had extremely high expectations in regards to perfection and excellence upon delivery of each and every motor car, so delivering 5152 examples of perfection was no small accomplishment.

It’s no surprise then to hear Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Chief Executive, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, comment of his team, “I am proud to say that the craftsmen and women of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars have surpassed themselves once again in creating an array of extraordinary motor cars, tailored to the requirements of some of the most influential and discerning individuals in the world. These motor cars become unique works of art and it is an extraordinary feat when you consider that each and every single one of these unique commissions has been created on one production line at the Home of Rolls-Royce”

Here is an overview of some of the Rolls-Royce designs the Bespoke Collective completed in 2019:

THE MILLION STITCH ROLLS-ROYCE
CANVAS: PHANTOM │MEDIUM: EMBROIDERY

Rolls-Royce Million Stitch Rose Phantom Interior
Rolls-Royce Rose Phantom with a million embroidered stitches. Credit: Rolls-Royce

A Stockholm-based entrepreneur with a passion for flowers challenged the Rolls-Royce Bespoke Collective to create a car that immersed its occupants in floral decadence. The result was the ‘Rose Phantom’: a vision made with a million embroidered stitches.

The starting point was a rose bred exclusively for Rolls-Royce by Harkness Roses with the Rolls-Royce home the only place in the world where the rose is grown.

GHOST ZENITH COLLECTION
CANVAS:
GHOST │MEDIUM: ENGRAVING, COMMEMORATIVE INGOT, PERFORATED LEATHER, EMBROIDERY

Rolls-Royce Ghost Zenith Shooting Star Headliner
Shooting star headliner in the Rolls-Royce Ghost Zenith Collection. Credit: Rolls-Royce

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars marked the close of 10 remarkable years of Ghost by creating a limited edition ‘Zenith Collection’. With just 50 Ghost Zeniths made, the car featured the highest levels of Bespoke ever seen in a Ghost Collection.

The Ghost Zenith drew references from 200EX, the experimental car that introduced the contemporary expression of the Ghost nameplate in 2009. A commemorative ingot, made from the original Spirit of Ecstasy of 200EX, was set into the centre console of each of the cars. The Collection’s own Spirit of Ecstasy and clock are engraved with the Zenith name. The Ghost Zenith also features a unique Shooting Star headliner. Light trails fire at random across the cabin roof, which consists of over 1,340 individual, hand-finished fibre optic lights.

BAYSIDE DAWN AERO COWLING
CANVAS:
DAWN │MEDIUM: AERO COWLING

rolls royce bayside dawn aero cowling
The bayside dawn aero cowling pays homage to Yokohama, Japan. Credit: Rolls-Royce

Following the arrival of the Dawn Aero Cowling in 2018, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars paid tribute to the sea with the Bayside Dawn Aero Cowling. Commissioned by a customer in Yokohama, Japan, this maritime-themed Bespoke motor car paid homage to their seafaring home city.

This one-off model drew inspiration from yachts and speedboats, combining both technical and natural materials. Open-pore teak Canadel panelling, reminiscent of a yacht’s deck, is matched with cutting-edge technical fibre. The rear deck complements exterior paint and interior leather colours, evoking the blue seas and white sails associated with the finest traditions of Yokohama Bay.

DIGITAL SOUL PHANTOM
CANVAS: PHANTOM │MEDIUM: ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, GOLD PLATING, GOLD INLAYS

rolls royce digital soul phantom
Bespoke Gold inlays and Smoked Eucalyptus wood. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Digital Soul Phantom is a study in contemporary artisanship. 3D printed stainless steel is hand polished and plated in 24-carat gold, resulting in a unique artwork that embodies jewellery, sculpture and architecture. Gold detailing embellishes the interior of the motor car, with Gold inlays set by hand in Smoked Eucalyptus wood and gold-plated speaker grilles concluding the aesthetic.

WRAITH EAGLE VIII COLLECTION
CANVAS: WRAITH │MEDIUM: GOLD VACUUM METALIZED WOOD WITH SILVER AND COPPER INLAYS

rolls royce wraith eagle viii headliner
The headliner depicts the sky at the time of the 1919 transatlantic flight. Credit: Rolls-Royce

To mark the centenary of the first non-stop transatlantic flight by Alcock and Brown in June 1919, Rolls-Royce created 50 extraordinary Wraiths in the Wraith Eagle VIII Collection.

The story of their perilous night-time journey, propelled by Rolls-Royce Eagle VIII engines, is told using Wraith as a canvas. A unique starlight headliner with 1,183 fibre-optic lights depicts the night time sky at the time of their flight. The flight path and constellations are embroidered in brass thread and the exact moment the pair left the clouds, also illustrated in embroidery, and navigated by the stars is indicated by a red fibre-optic light.

Brass speaker covers depict the estimated 1,880-mile flight distance whilst a brass plaque engraved with Winston Churchill’s stirring quote commending the pair’s remarkable achievement adorns the driver’s door.

The Smoked Eucalyptus fascia, vacuum metalized in gold and inlaid with silver and copper, depicts a birds-eye view of the Earth at night, showing a light map of roads and homes glittering below.

HOROLOGY PHANTOM
CANVAS: PHANTOM │MEDIUM: STAINLESS STEEL AND GOLD INLAY, COACHLINE

rolls-royce-horology-phantom-detail
Details inside the Horology Phantom. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Horology Phantom is touched with elements redolent of fine timepieces. The car was inspired by a meeting of a Rolls-Royce Motor Cars designer and master horologists from La Chaux-de-Fonds in Switzerland, who convened to explore the complexities and exotic movements of contemporary luxury timepieces.

Set against a Gunmetal and Black two-tone exterior finish, a gold and silver hand-painted twin coachline incorporates an intricate watch-inspired design; the Spirit of Ecstasy is cloaked in 24-carat gold. Inside, the fascia features the largest stainless steel and gold inlay ever made for Phantom. Positioned below a multiple layered stainless-steel Gallery, the inlay depicts an abstract schematic of a watch movement. The Rolls-Royce clock, housed in the Gallery, is set in a solid silver, guilloché case.

PEBBLE BEACH PASTEL COLLECTION
CANVAS: GHOST, DAWN, WRAITH │MEDIUM: PAINT, TECHNICAL FIBRE

Rolls-Royce-Pebble-Beach-Pastel-Collection
The Pebble Beach Pastel Collection. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Pastel Collection, showcased at Pebble Beach, drew upon a palette of colours from 2019’s ‘wildflower super-bloom’ on California’s Monterey Peninsula. Three unique Black Badge commissions brought new colours to the Rolls-Royce Bespoke palette, reaffirming the notion that a Rolls-Royce Black Badge need not necessarily be black.

The Ghost Black Badge featured a Light Green Solid finish, a pastel shade representing the rebirth of flora on the peninsula after years of drought and fire. The black leather interior features a striking Serenity Green splash, highlighting the technical fibre of the fascia.

The Dawn Black Badge, in Coral Solid, showcases a stunning Bespoke finish only achieved after seven coats of paint and more than nine hours of hand-polishing in the Surface Finish Centre. The Coral colour carries over to the Aero Cowling, while the interior is finished in Artic White and Sunset, an illustration of northern California’s hills and valleys in bloom.

The third car is a Wraith Black Badge in Semaphore Yellow, a bright and sunny finish for the most powerful member of the Rolls-Royce family, complemented by a Selby Grey and Lemon interior.

FALCON WRAITH
CANVAS: WRAITH │MEDIUM: EMBROIDERY, PAINT

Rolls-Royce Falcon Wraith
Nearly a quarter of a million stitches make up the Falcon embroidery. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Falcon Wraith features the most detailed single embroidery to ever appear in a Rolls-Royce motor car. An intricate embroidery of a Peregrine Falcon, the fastest bird in the world, is interpreted in photo-realistic detail amongst clouds on Wraith’s headlining. Consisting of nearly 250,000 stitches, the dramatic embroidery took more than one month to develop.

A unique coachline in Arctic White hints at the form of the bird’s wing, with the motif additionally embroidered between the rear seats and painted onto Wraith’s fascia.

THE ARABIAN GULF PHANTOM
CANVAS: PHANTOM │MEDIUM: EMBROIDERY, PAINT, MOTHER OF PEARL, SCULPTED SILK APLIQUÉ

Rolls-Royce Arabian Gulf Phantom
Rolls-Royce Arabian Gulf Phantom. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Arabian Gulf Phantom adopts the rich colours and historical narrative of pearl diving in the Middle East. The Turchese exterior hue is evocative of the vibrant local waters, while the Andalusian White upper two-tone recalls the purity of natural pearls, alluding to the story within. An Arctic White coachline introduces a hand-painted Nautilus shell motif that forms the basis for the car’s design.

A sculpted silk appliqué Gallery by British Artist Helen Amy Murray takes centre stage across the motor car’s fascia. Reminiscent of swelling oceans, the Turchese Gallery is punctuated by a Mother of Pearl clock.

Rolls-Royce Arabian Gulf Phantom Picnic Table Inlay
Mother of Pearl picnic table marquetry. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Nautilus shell is embroidered on Phantom’s rear doors, whilst the rear occupants may also enjoy the motif in Mother of Pearl marquetry on the picnic tables’ fascia. Once deployed, the picnic tables present a complex piece of marquetry, incorporating generously applied Mother of Pearl to the picnic table-top.

TRANQUILLITY COLLECTION
CANVAS: PHANTOM │MEDIUM: METEORITE, SPACE GRADE ALUMINIUM, GOLD PLATE

Rolls-Royce Phantom Tranquillity Collection
Meteorite shavings were used inside the Tranquillity Collection Phantom. Credit: Rolls-Royce

Named and crafted to celebrate the feeling of euphoric tranquillity one achieves within Phantom, this unique motor car is a curation of objects and inspirations from worlds beyond earthly bounds.

Tranquillity’s Gallery is inspired by the X-Ray coded aperture masks used on the British Skylark space rocket. The Gallery is made from stainless steel, 24-carat gold plating and space grade aluminium.

For the first time in Rolls-Royce history, meteorite has been incorporated into the interior of a car. Shavings of the Muonionalusta meteorite, which fell to earth in Kiruna, Sweden in 1906, adorn the Volume Controller, with a detailed engraving of the location and date of its discovery.

Inspired by the light and dark sides of the Moon, the interior colourway of Arctic White or Selby Grey leather integrates unique veneer combinations of gloss and satin, both with an exclusive metallic effect. Bespoke audio speaker frets are finished in yellow gold, complementing the additional gold elements throughout the car.

A Bespoke ‘Technical’ yellow gold, vapour blasted and engraved titanium clock and engineered titanium Spirit of Ecstasy complete the aesthetic.

CULLINAN IN FUX ORANGE
CANVAS: CULLINAN │MEDIUM: PAINT

rolls royce fux orange cullinan
The one-off fux orange Cullinan. Credit: Rolls-Royce

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars debuted the colourful ‘Cullinan in Fux Orange’ under the summer sun of Pebble Beach last year. Working with the Bespoke Collective, a North American patron, Mr. Fux, challenged designers to match the exterior colour to vibrant orange shawl that had caught his eye in South Florida. The shawl was delivered to Rolls-Royce Motor Cars where a colour-matching process began.

Working together for nearly a year, the teams created a seven-layer surface, polished by hand for many hours in the Surface Finish Centre. The interior is decked in hand-crafted Arctic White leather with contrast Orange stitching and Orange Rolls-Royce ‘RR’ headrest monograms.

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Luxury Cars

Bentley Reveals The Last Mulsanne Production Run – The “6.75” Mulliner Edition

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Bentley announce the retirement of the Mulsanne – but not without last one last hurrah.
  • Limited to just 30 examples
  • Flagship Mulsanne to be replaced by the Flying Spur
  • Bentley will offer hybrid options for all models by 2023
The 2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Front View
Only 30 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Editions to be produced. Credit: Bentley
2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Welcome Lamp
6.75 Mulliner Edition welcome lamp. Credit: Bentley

Revealed earlier today, Bentley have made the decision to retire the Mulsanne but not before announcing plans for the final 30 specially designed cars – namely the “6.75” Edition created by Mulliner.

Introduced in 2011 as Bentley’s flagship model, the Mulsanne has remained popular throughout its 9 year tenure and was originally named in honour of the Mulsanne Corner of the Le Mans race track, a track that has so far given 6 wins to Bentley in the 24 Hours of Le Mans racing event.

The 2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Interior Front Cabin View
A sweeping look at the 6.75 Mulliner Edition’s front cabin. Credit: Bentley

Inspired by Bentley’s 6¾-litre V8 engine, which celebrates its 60th year in continuous use, the 6.75 Edition will be the last 30 Mulsanne models to roll off the production line before being replaced by the Flying Spur as Bentley’s flagship model.

Details of its namesake are featured throughout the interior design created by Mulliner and include interior “organ stop” caps that look like miniature engine oil caps, seat stitching with the 6.75 emblem and engine design etchings across the dashboard.

The 2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Oil Cap Air Styled Vent Knob
Engine oil cap styled organ stop air vent knobs. Credit: Bentley
The 2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Limited Series Plaque
Limited edition plaque. Credit: Bentley
2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Seat Embroidery Stitching
The last Mulsanne sports unique embroidery on the seats. Credit: Bentley
The 2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Dash Dials
Dashboard clock and dial styling. Credit: Bentley

Outside, the Mulliner details include the Serenity radiator grille, 21″ five-spike Mulsanne Speed wheels with blacked-out Flying B bonnet mascot and details, while under the bonnet the engine manifold will also finished in black instead of the usual silver.

Once production ends in Spring 2020, staff that were tasked with all things Mulsanne, will move on to production of other models, including the Flying Spur and there will be plenty to do as all Bentley models will offer a hybrid powertrain option by 2023.

2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition V8 Engine
The Bentley 6.75L V8 engine has seen 60 years of continuous use. Credit: Bentley
2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Wheel and Panel Badge
The 6.75 Edition unique panel badge. Credit: Bentley
Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Treadplate and plaque
Tread plate and accompanying plaque. Credit: Bentley
2020 Bentley Mulsanne 6.75 Mulliner Edition Rear View
All Bentley models will have a hybrid option from 2023. Credit: Bentley

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