Rolls-Royce, one of the most traditional car brands, is not resisting the transition to electrification. More than 10 years after a first draft with the Concept 102EX, the company is embarking on the adventure with both feet with a brand new electric coupe, the 2024 Spectre.
The Spectre coupe could very well pass for a new version of the defunct Wraith, but this is absolutely not the case. The Spectre is built on the new “Architecture of Luxury” platform also found under the Cullinan, Phantom VIII and Ghost. Particularly interestingly, in 1900, Charles Rolls almost prophetically affirmed the future of his brand by pointing out that the future of the automobile would be electric thanks to cleanliness and silence, only the absence of infrastructure would limit their expansion. More than 120 years later, Rolls-Royce is finally getting there.
In terms of design, we immediately recognize the features and proportions that we know of Rolls-Royce since the takeover of the manufacturer by BMW. The Parthenon grille continues to evolve with no less than 22 LEDs to ensure its illumination in the evening. The optical blocks are in two sections. The upper part serves as a daytime headlight while the lower section, in a more discreet black case, incorporates the main evening lighting elements. Not surprisingly, the doors continue their reverse opening. The roofline is almost modeled on the one we discovered in 2014 with the Wraith. This configuration also facilitates the possibility of a two-tone painting. The 23-inch fan wheels are also similar to those of the Phantom VIII Series 2 launched earlier in 2022. As for the rear, simplicity reigns with two small lights through a clear lens. The Spectre is massive with a wheelbase of 3,210 millimeters in length and a mass of nearly 3,000 kilos. The contribution of the architecture makes it possible to integrate the batteries while increasing structural rigidity by 30%.
In the cabin, there are few surprises because, here too, the tradition remains very strong. The interior presentation follows very closely what we know of the new Ghost. However, the spectacle of the 4,796 LEDs applied in the doors to support the starry roof pavilion. As it should be, the instrumentation goes digital. As the Spectre is a Rolls-Royce, even if it is electric, the configuration possibilities remain endless.
Technically, Rolls-Royce does not disclose all information. There is a lot of emphasis on ride comfort from the new suspensions. With 18 sensors and shock absorbers and anti-roll bars for each wheel, the aim is to minimize low-frequency vibration. Under these conditions, the program will also intervene on steering, accelerator and brake components. In terms of electrification elements, there is little data. The battery weighs about 700 kilos, the expected power is 577 horsepower, and the torque is 664 pound-feet. The size of the battery is not mentioned, but it is suspected that it will exceed 100 to 110 kilowatt hours. For now, according to the WLTP evaluation, we are talking about a range of 520 kilometers. Depending on the North American assessment, we will be closer to 440 to 450 kilometres. For the 0-100 kilometers per hour, Rolls-Royce estimates a time of 4.5 seconds, which is not particularly fast.
The first Spectre will be produced towards the end of 2023 at a price that will be between that of the Cullinan and that of the Phantom VIII. We are talking about a bill that will exceed $400,000.