Geneva Motor Show 2013: Rolls-Royce Wraith

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

Keith Adams

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Rolls-Royce once again recalls a classic name for one of its new models. The Wraith is the new flagship coupe and also the most powerful production RR ever built, developing 624bhp. The Wraith’s order book is now open, with deliveries of this £200,000-plus coupe beginning this autumn. It’s natural rival is the Bentley Continental – and it’s a long time since the two companies have competed directly like this.

The Wraith’s 624bhp V12 develops 590lb ft and the company claims that this elegant coupe will glide from 0-60mph in 4.4sec. The new car is based on the Ghost, which makes it an incredible continent-shrinker in our experience, but is slightly more compact and promises a more ‘dynamic’ driving experience.

The Wraith is 130mm shorter than the Ghost and its wheelbase has been tightened by 183mm, too. It’s also 40mm wider and 43mm lower – so this two-door is still an indulgent car and large in comparison with most other cars. However, based on long drives of the Ghost, it’s likely that the Wraith will feel considerably smaller than that on the road.

There will be some impressive technical additions to the Wraith, including satellite-aided transmission, which uses GPS data to preselect gears – based on the way the driver is using the car. This is exactly the sort of top-end technology that you can expect to filter down to your Mondeo within the next decade.

The Wraith’s interior will be familiar to Ghost drivers, especially the ‘night sky’ headlining, which creates an interesting ambiance thank to 1340 LEDs hand-woven into the headlining. There will be new touches though – inspired by the boating industry, such as marine-grade wood-panelling. And it’s gorgeous.

‘Today we launch the ultimate gentlemen’s gran turismo, a car that embodies the spirit of Charles Stewart Rolls,’ said Torsten Müller-Ötvös, CEO Rolls-Royce Motor Cars. ‘The most powerful Rolls-Royce in history, Wraith promises the sense of adventure and speed that drove our founding forefather. But of course, Wraith’s starting point is luxury, refinement and quality, traits that remain as important to Rolls-Royce customers today as they were more than a century ago.’

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Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

16 Comments

  1. Side profile, very nice indeed. Front elevation, ugly.

    But what do I care? The chances of me ever being in a position to consider buying one are very, very remote 🙂

  2. Aronline’s rabid response* team has been chatting with our man in Goodwood today in Geneva and it’s all good news, more to follow!

  3. Looks good. But for me, Rolls should be about the saloons. Bentley is where you go for a rakish gentleman’s coupe.

  4. Hideous : it really surprises me that RR have been able to keep going – BMW’s patience ( and pockets) cannot be inexhaustible , although I suppose that in truth not much is being spent on mechanical development in excess of the 7 series costs

  5. I’m going to modify my previous post : it does look good from the side, but the entire car is ruined by the front . Henry Royce will be turning in his grave

  6. A RR performance coupe sounds likes a contradiction, but I’m sure it will sell.

    Is it me, or do BMW pick people with the most un British names to run RR. With a name like Torsten Müller-Ötvös, you can visualise the lederhosen in your mind!

  7. Rolls Royce is a brand that for me has been forever tarnished due to a certain now disgraced and dead lover of the brand, Jimmy Savlon, and people like Tarby, Bernard Manning….

  8. Those headlights. Yes, those headlights. Horrid. Graceless, squinty, generic bargain-basement rubbish design. The rest of the car (like the Phantom) is hardly elegant, but it’s at least serviceable. But then those awful headlights completely spoil everything.

  9. I prefer the RR headlights to the current ‘little – BIG’ Bentley headlight arrangement.

    This would make a nice replacement for the Celica.

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