Rolls-Royce hits new sales record in 2022 | CAR Magazine

Rolls-Royce hits new sales record in 2022

Published: 09 January 2023 Updated: 09 January 2023

► Luxury car maker reports highest-ever annual sales
► China the only big market not booming for Rolls
► CEO optimistic that move into EVs will go smoothly

Rolls-Royce has revealed that in 2022 it sold more cars than ever before in its 118-year history. The total was 6021, up 8% on 2021, with an average price of more than half a million euros.

CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös said: ‘We’ve succeeded because we listen and consistently evolve our products in line with our clients’ tastes and requirements, consciously rejuvenating our brand while retaining our innate exclusivity and rarity.’

The Goodwood-based BMW division’s biggest market was the Americas, which took 35% of Rolls-Royce’s output, with China on 25%, Europe on 20%, and the Middle East and Far East both on 10%.

Aside from Russia, where Rolls-Royce sales stopped after the invasion of Ukraine, China was the only big market that didn’t grow in. Covid and other problems meant it suffered a reverse in single percentage figures. But Müller-Ötvös praised the way his team had faced up to these challenges, and was optimistic that before long China would again be a growing market.

Much of the success worldwide was down to the Bespoke programme, the lucrative process by which customers liaise with Rolls-Royce to personalise their car before production starts.

That often invoves a visit to Goodwood, although Rolls has now opened a ‘Private Office’ in Dubai, where customers can pore over their paint, wood and other personalisation options. More Private Offices will be opening soon, with the focus on China and other parts of Asia.

Planning permission is being sought for a major extension of the Goodwood factory, including a new paint shop, that will enable Bespoke to be expanded.

Müller-Ötvös stressed that sales growth was not the aim – Rolls-Royce ownership had to be an exclusive experience. He added: ‘We’re profit-driven – that’s how I’m steered from Munich. We earn the money we spend. It’s our money. There’s everything in place for future expansion.’

The most popular model in 2022 was the Cullinan – accounting for around half of all sales – followed by the Ghost on 30%, then the Phantom on 10%, and the outgoing Dawn and Wraith between them adding up to the other 10%.

Müller-Ötvös predicts that the all-electric Spectre, which is due to go on sale before the end of 2023, will become the third biggest seller, after the Cullinan and Ghost. The whole range will be all-electric before the end of 2030.

By Colin Overland

CAR's managing editor: wordsmith, critic, purveyor of fine captions