► New electric Rolls-Royce Spectre
► EV underpinned by Phantom platform
► Will be unveiled by the end of 2023
After many years of discussion and speculation, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has finally confirmed that it's working on its first-ever production electric car. It will be named the Spectre when it arrives on the market at the end of 2023.
The Rolls-Royce Cars boss, Torsten Müller-Ötvös, says he's been repeatedly asked when the brand would go electric, and now he has the answer. This new Spectre model marks the true start of Rolls-Royce's electrification plans, as the brand aims to be pure-electric by 2030.
Actual details about the new EV are scarce, but Rolls-Royce says it will run on the same architecture it's developed for its latest generation of cars: the Phantom, Ghost and Cullinan SUV. RR says it plans on covering 2.5 million kilometres of testing for the new Spectre – what it calculates to be 400 years of use – by the time the new car goes on sale.
Camouflaged images of the Spectre show a similar silhouette to the Ghost but with two rear-opening doors, with a tapered rear glasshouse like the Sweptail project.
Rolls-Royce's electric plans explained
Electrification is not new to Rolls-Royce, however. 'Sir Henry Royce was fascinated by all things electrified, and his first venture, F. H. Royce and Company, created dynamos and electric motors, and patented the bayonet light fitting,' said Müller-Ötvös.
Even founder Charles Rolls predicted the rise of the EV back in 1900: 'The electric car is perfectly noiseless and clean. There is no smell or vibration, and they should become very useful when fixed charging stations can be arranged. But for now, I do not anticipate that they will be very serviceable – at least for many years to come.'
The brand has been experimenting with electrification for a decade; the 102EX concept, for example, was a pure-electric Phantom, while the 103EX was a wild, futuristic look at what a Roller of the 2030s could look like.
Müller-Ötvös says Rolls-Royce is aiming to 'create the first, and finest, super-luxury product of its type.
'This is not a prototype. It's the real thing, and it will be tested in plain sight. Our clients will take first deliveries of the car in the fourth quarter of 2023.'
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