Rolls-Royce has taken the first step toward meeting its vision of selling solely electrified vehicles by 2030. The all-electric Spectre was launched on October 18 at the company’s headquarters in Goodwood, England.
Electrified Magic Carpet Ride
The Spectre is similar in appearance and size to the two-door Rolls-Royce Wraith, but bigger, and is built on the same all-aluminum chassis as the premium Phantom sedan and midsize Ghost sedan. It generates 577 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. It boasts a 4.4-second zero-to-60-mph sprint time and a peak speed of 155 mph, which is nearly equivalent to the Ghost but significantly slower than the three seconds claimed by the faster—and far less luxurious—variants of the Porsche Taycan or Tesla Model S. According to EPA estimations, the total driving range under electric power is 260 miles; Spectre will be able to charge from 10-80% full in 34 minutes.
According to Müller-tvös, most Rolls-Royce owners will never use a public charging station.
“The majority of our clientele have an electric vehicle in their garage,” he explains. “They have seven automobiles on average, and many have charging stations at home. They have charging stations in their workplaces.”
The two-door coupe has a highly sensitive “planar” suspension system that can disconnect the car’s anti-roll bars, allowing each wheel to respond independently and reducing rocking motion caused by one side of a vehicle hitting an undulation in the road. This also helps to sustain the marque’s reputation for offering the quietest, smoothest automobiles on the market by reducing high-frequency noises generated by poor road surface quality.
The Spectre is built on the same all-aluminum construction as the Phantom and Ghost. It will be manufactured on existing lines at the company’s plant in Goodwood, England. Rolls-Royce is related to First Look: The Spectre Coupe is Rolls-first Royce’s electric vehicle. The rear taillights are two vertical bands wrapped in a slightly distorted rectangle.
The Spectre, which rides on 23-inch wheels and has a fastback body design, is longer and heavier than the Wraith and pays homage to the Phantom coupe that Rolls-Royce built from 2008 to 2016. (It lacks a trunk in the front, as do many lower EVs, including ones from Lucid and Tesla.) Battery-electric systems and fluid canisters for the windshield wipers take up room beneath the hood.)
“Every Rolls-Royce, in my opinion, should be two-tone,” says design director Anders Warming, noting that Rolls-Royce opted to debut its first EV in a coupe body style—rather than a sedan or SUV—as an emotional choice “simply to fire us up.”
The Spectre has 23-inch wheels, a long fastback roofline, and carriage-style doors that open in reverse.
The term Spectre comes from the depths of Rolls-Royce’s history. The Silver Spectre was a showcase automobile made by the brand in 1910. By 1936, it had produced nine trial vehicles, code-named Spectre, before the model went into production as the Phantom III. This is the first time the title has been applied to a Rolls-Royce in serial production.
According to company archives, Rolls-Royce has long been skeptical about electric vehicles, despite co-founder Charles Rolls’ prediction in 1900 that the new motorized carriages of the day would someday operate on electricity. Despite some early testing of electric prototypes in 2011 and 2016, Müller-tvös stated as recently as 2019 that he wants to maintain Rolls-world-famous Royce’s silent, smooth coaches for “as long as feasible.”
However, parent company BMW AG has made it clear where all of its brands must go. Last year, the firm unveiled its first-ever all-electric iX SUV and i4 sedan. The company has stated that its battery cell orders have surpassed $24 billion to keep up with the rising demand for electric vehicles. EVs accounted for 11% of BMW Group deliveries in the first half of 2021. In an Oct. 17 roundtable discussion, BMW AG Chairman Oliver Zipse predicted that by 2030, 50% of all vehicles sold throughout the firm would be electric.
According to a spokeswoman, the Spectre will be priced between the $350,000 Cullinan SUV and the $460,000 Phantom sedan. According to Müller-tvös, manufacturing quantities will lag behind those of the Cullinan and Ghost while exceeding those of the Phantom. According to him, over 300 clients have already been invited to see the automobile, with overwhelmingly good results.
“The order intake has been very delightful—and extremely promising,” adds Müller-tvös.
The first deliveries are expected to occur in the fourth quarter of 2023.