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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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Geneva Motor Show 2020 Cancelled 3 Days Before Scheduled Event Opening

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In a huge blow for the event and attendees, the Geneva International Motor Show 2020 (GIMS) has been officially cancelled.
Geneva International Motor Show atmosphere
Geneva International Motor Show 2020 has been cancelled. Credit: GIMS Swiss

The 90th edition of GIMS was due to welcome media on Monday 2nd March 2020 and the general public from Thursday 5th – Sunday 15th March with approximately 500,000 attendees expected. However just 3 days before the scheduled opening the official announcement was made that the event had been cancelled with GIMS confirming there would be no rescheduling to another time in the year.

The Geneva International Motor Show stated that the cancellation was due to an injunction of the Federal Council of 28th February 2020 that no events with more than 1000 people are allowed to take place until 15th March 2020.

Czinger Vehicles commented on the Official GIMS Instagram account @gimsswiss stating “Very disappointingly. We know how committed you are to creating the best car show on earth and how much that goes into it, so we empathize with you a lot. Heart wrenching for us as well as this was going to be the big launch that we had planned for for a long long time. Sometimes things are beyond our control…”

With nearly half a million people having already planned to attend, and around 50% of those with flights and accommodation already paid for and secured, many have the difficult decision of whether they should continue traveling to Geneva and holiday or try to contact providers and check their cancellation options. The Geneva International Motor Show has committed to refunding all tickets purchased for the 2020 event.

Geneva International Motor Show 2020  cancelled official statement
GIMS 2020 cancellation official statement.

The GIMS official response via their press release and website home page stated….

The organizers accept this decision: “We regret this situation, but the health of all participants is our and our exhibitors’ top priority. This is a case of force majeure and a tremendous loss for the manufacturers who have invested massively in their presence in Geneva. However, we are convinced that they will understand this decision,” said Maurice Turrettini, Chairman of the Foundation Board. We would like to warmly thank all those involved in the organisation of the 2020 edition of GIMS.

A few days before the opening of the event, the construction of the stands was very nearly complete. A week ago, during the press conferences announcing the 2020 edition, there was nothing to suggest that such a measure was necessary. The situation changed with the appearance of the first confirmed coronavirus diseases in Switzerland and the injonction of the Federal Council on 28.02.2020. The event is cancelled due to this decision. In the meantime, the dismantling of the event will now have to be organised. The financial consequences for all those involved in the event are significant and will need to be assessed over the coming weeks. One thing is certain: tickets already purchased for the event will be refunded. The organisers will communicate about this as soon as possible, via their website.

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New Supercar Company by Next Gen Marc Philipp Gemballa

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Marc Philipp Gemballa, the son of late German auto tuner Uwe Gemballa, is building on his father’s auto legacy by starting a high performance car company.

A week out from this years now cancelled Geneva Motor Show, Marc Philipp Gemballa the 26 year old son of legendary German auto tuner Uwe Gemballa, has announced his intentions to launch a brand new supercar company bearing his name “Marc Philipp Gemballa”.

The Next Generation of the Gemballa Family Name Marc Philipp Gemballa
The Next Generation of the Gemballa Family Name. Credit: Marc Philipp Gemballa

Revealing the announcement via social media, Marc revealed the fully funded project has been in development for almost two years and already has client orders.

Marc was also quick to note that while he will continue with the legacy of his father, this will not be the same tuning/body kit car brand and is an entirely new company, not to be confused with the currently operating Gemballa GmbH founded by his late father.

Marc Philipp Gemballa age 4, pictured with a Gemballa '911 in 1997
Marc Philipp Gemballa age 4, pictured with a Gemballa ‘911 in 1997. Credit: Marc Philipp Gemballa

While only a single teaser image has been provided, we do know the design is attributed to French car exterior designer Alan Derosier who has previously worked for brands like Chery, Faraday Future and Renault and was the project leader for the Porsche 908-04 concept car.

Other partners of the project include Michelin & BF Goodrich Tires (suppliers of heavy duty off-road/rally tires), German based KW Suspension (who actually test their suspension on the Nürburgring track) and Slovenian performance exhaust manufacturer Akrapovič.

The planned big reveal was for the 2020 Geneva International Motor Show held at the Palexpo Convention Centre. 3 Days out from the international event Swiss authorities banned events with more than 1000 people due to Coronavirus fears. Like most of the automakers that were planning to exhibit and reveal products, Marc Philipp Gemballa will now have to reschedule and re-think its big reveal.

Marc Philipp Gemballa uploaded a teaser of things to come
Marc Philipp Gemballa uploaded a teaser of things to come. Credit: Marc Philipp Gemballa

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Where the $2.2 Million Lotus EVIJA Will Be Produced

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The new Lotus manufacturing facility in Hethel, UK is now ready for the testing and full-scale production of the fully-electric Lotus Evija.
Lotus Evija EV hypercar production facility light tunnel
Lotus Evija EV hypercar production facility light tunnel. Credit: Lotus Cars
  • The newest car production facility in the world according to Lotus
  • Interior is illuminated by more than 30,000 LED’s
  • All 130 examples of the $2.2 Million EV hypercar will be produced here

When the new fully-electric two seat Lotus Evija was announced in July last year, work was already underway to complete the new production facility where the EV hypercar would see its final testing and full scale production take place.

Lotus have now revealed the assembly hall is ready and some of the first examples to roll off the production line will be rolled out next door to undergo further testing on Lotus’ notable 2.2-mile circuit which has hosted testing and shake-down sessions with many Formula 1 legends such as Ayrton Senna, Emerson Fittipaldi, Jim Clark and others.

The new workspace will see Lotus hand-build up to 130 examples of the Evija with full-scale production expected to commence soon in the second half of 2020.

Phil Popham, the Lotus Cars CEO spoke to his 1400 employees and stated “With our new factory ready, we are ahead of the pack in the emerging EV hypercar segment and 100% ready for some healthy competition.”

Commenting on the new milestone for Lotus, Phil went on further to say “This is now the newest car production facility in the world, and to witness it move from the drawing board to reality has been deeply satisfying. It’s testament to the commitment of all involved, and is the perfect sleek and high-tech production home for the Evija at our iconic Hethel headquarters.”

Lotus Evija EV hypercar production facility gantry and crane
Gantries on 3 sides with an overhead crane. Credit: Lotus Cars
Lotus Evija EV hypercar production facility vehicle lift
One of the Evija production facility’s vehicle lifts. Credit: Lotus Cars

30,000 of the latest high-density, low-energy LEDs will shower the build hall that contains gantries on three sides, an overhead gantry crane, multiple vehicle lifts and a wheel alignment ramp. Lotus have also included a state-of-the-art light tunnel where rigorous final inspections take place before each Lotus Evija is driven out directly on to the test track for dynamic validation.

The last six months has reportedly seen the project involve the co-ordination of 20 specialist contractors and more than 50 experts.

Lotus Evija EV hypercar to be hand built at the production facility
Some of the Lotus Evija will be hand built. Credit: Lotus Cars
Lotus Evija EV hypercar to be hand built at the production facility
Every element of the Evija will be meticulously analysed and validated. Credit: Lotus Cars

Lotus Evija Specs

*Note these are target specifications

  • Name: Lotus Evija (Type 130)
  • Powertrain: Pure electric, 4WD
  • Power: The target is to be the most powerful production car in the world, at 2,000 PS
  • Battery power:  70 kw/h / 2,000 kW
  • Torque: 1,700 Nm with torque vectoring
  • 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph): Under three seconds
  • 0-300 km/h (0-186 mph): Under nine seconds
  • Max speed: In excess of 200 mph (320 km/h)
  • All-electric range (WLTP Combined): 250 miles (400 km)
  • Charging time (350kW charger): 18 mins
  • Weight: 1,680 kg
  • Production run: Maximum of 130 cars
  • Overall dimensions (L/W/H): 4,459 / 2,000 / 1,122 mm
  • Price: From £1.7m + duties and taxes Reservation process – £250k deposit secures a production slot
Lotus Evija EV hypercar interior
The Lotus Evija EV hypercar interior. Credit: Lotus Cars

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