We never thought we'd see the day that Rolls-Royce, one of the greatest purveyors of luxury automobiles, goes electric. Yet here we are.
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars have just officially released a statement that they have indeed been working on an electric vehicle, but they're not launching it yet. What Rolls-Royce is actually announcing is that the vehicle is in the development phase and that they are about to start on-road testing; meaning it's the actual car, not just a development mule.
“This is not a prototype. It’s the real thing, it will be tested in plain sight and our clients will take first deliveries of the car in the fourth quarter of 2023,” said Torsten Muller-Otvos, Rolls-Royce CEO.
The company hasn't released any details regarding the specs, performance, range, and other bits of important information, but they did say that the vehicle will use the company's spaceframe technology. They also mentioned that the development from this point on will be on road, and will cover about 2.5 million kilometers.
They did drop one key piece of info though, and that's the name: Rolls-Royce Spectre. Sounds chilling, doesn't it?
“Spectre is a name given to otherworldly beings synonymous with great power and apparition; creatures of an alternative realm that make their presence felt through fleeting manifestation,” continued Muller-Otvos in the poetic statement. “A spectre forces the world to pause. It dominates the space it occupies. Then, as quickly as it appears, it dissipates, leaving a wake of exhilaration, energy, and intrigue.”
This transition will be huge for Rolls-Royce, as the company confirmed another bombshell: they will not be producing vehicles with internal combustion engines anymore by 2030. That in itself will send a major signal to all automakers due to the perception of Rolls-Royce's models as symbols of luxurious excess, yet somehow finding the drive to go emissions-free.
Rolls-Royce says that the new model will have the great qualities expected of one of their models such as silence, luxury, and refinement, but will be combined with the instant torque and power of electric drive. They say that it will have that 'waftability' that RR has been known for, but there is also a sentimental angle: the launch of the Spectre will be a fulfillment of a prediction by their founders.
“The electric car is perfectly noiseless and clean,” said Charles Rolls in 1900 after driving an early electric car. “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.”
It appears that time is arriving sooner rather than later.