Although Rolls-Royce models are regarded as ugly and gaudy by a certain section of gearheads, the brand is widely considered the height of automobile luxury. The large, chunky build of Rolls-Royce models contrasts the sleek vehicles from other luxury brands. To truly appreciate Rolls-Royce cars, however, you will have to understand the amount of work expended in their production.
Unlike other carmakers, Rolls-Royce doesn't just sell cars; they sell a unique experience. They pay attention to every detail, and their vehicles are a complete show of craftsmanship, and that's why buyers have to follow some rules to own a Rolls Royce model. Each Rolls-Royce vehicle is different, and the owners get to choose from numerous customization options. Clients can choose to get a collection of Rolls-Royce branded umbrellas in their vehicle, personalized headrests with their initials, privacy glass, and more. The possibility of customization is endless with Rolls-Royce. If you're interested in knowing more, here's what we've learned about Rolls-Royce and its cars.
10 Thief-Proof Spirit Of Ecstasy
Made by Charles Sykes, the spirit of ecstasy is Rolls Royce's mascot and one of the most recognizable car hood ornaments anywhere in the world, and it's one of the fascinating things about Rolls-Royce. The sculpture has a long history, and the company has been using it for 110 years now. Since people started stealing the spirit of ecstasy from Rolls-Royce hoods, the company devised a means to protect their cars.
If someone applies pressure to the sculpture, it immediately retracts under the hood. The Rolls-Royce team engineered the mechanism with sensors, and it's standard on all Rolls-Royce models from 2003 to date.
9 They Make Aircraft Engines
You might be unaware, but Rolls-Royce makes aircraft engines...and they're pretty accomplished at it, too. After integration in 2011, the aerospace and defense company operated under Rolls-Royce Holdings PLC. Apart from aerospace, Rolls-Royce is also involved in Marine propulsion systems and the energy sector.
The brand is currently the world's second-largest aircraft engine manufacturer. Some of their retail clients include China Air and Qatar airways. The Rolls-Royce Olympus 593 powered the Concorde supersonic, and the Trent 900 powered the Airbus A386.
8 They Use BMW Engines
You'd expect a company that excels in building aircraft engines to make their car engines, too, but that's not the case for Rolls-Royce. Since 1998, BMW has been supplying car engines to Rolls-Royce.
Founded in 1904, Rolls-Royce faced bankruptcy in 1971. As a result, they split different branches of their companies, and organizations like Volkswagen AG and BMW could acquire them. However, the British government later nationalized the aerospace arm of Rolls-Royce. Also, BMW officially assumed control of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Limited in 2003.
7 Self-emptying Ashtrays
Very few manufacturers offer ashtrays in their cars, and for those who do, it's not standard. Most smokers have to dispose of their ash and cigarette butt through the window, but that's not safe. Car models like the 2015 Porsche Cayenne, 2015 Aston Martin V8 Vantage, and 2015 Ferrari 458 Italia have ashtrays and lighters as available options that cost hundreds of dollars.
The 2019 Chevrolet Sonic has a smokers package that costs $55. For Rolls-Royce models, the smokers' package comes with self-emptying ashtrays. Once the ashtray lid is closed, it automatically cleans itself. Now that's class.
6 It Takes Six Months To Build A Rolls-Royce
In the 1900s, manufacturers like Ford innovated ways to improve the assembly line and reduce time spent in car production. Toyota has been open about their production process, and it takes 17-18 hours to assemble a Toyota car. Tesla takes 3-5 days to build a car with its assembly line moving at a speed of 2 inches/second.
For Rolls-Royce, it takes six whole months to build a single model; yes, you read that right. Six months. But why? Well, the company crafts its vehicles with materials sourced from the best places, and they have to pay attention to their clients' customization choices to create bespoke auto units. When you consider the quality of materials and attention to detail, then six months is not too long to build Rolls-Royce.
Rolls-Royce has been smashing aircraft speed records since the 1900s, so they know a thing or two about performance. While most Rolls-Royce models do not have a fast pick-up time, they generally keep their composure on the road.
The 2021 Rolls-Royce Wraith is the quickest model with 624 horsepower, 605 lb-ft of torque, and an acceleration rate of 0-60 mph in 4.4 seconds. Rolls-Royce fitted the Wraith with a twin-turbocharged 6.6-liter V12 engine mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission system to attain this speed.
4 Coach Liner
Depending on the client's choice, they can get a coach line painted on the sides of their Rolls-Royce. These lines are hand-painted, and only one man can paint them on a Rolls-Royce—Mark Court. Court was a sign painter and applied for the coach liner job when Rolls-Royce opened a branch in his village.
He underwent five years of coach lining apprenticeship before he began painting pinstripes on Rolls-Royces. The process of painting the line on a 20-foot car takes three hours on each side, and he uses thin fine brushes made from ox or squirrel hair.
3 Noise-free Cabin
Rolls-Royce has taken extreme measures to make its car cabins noise-free. The Rolls-Royce Ghost is the world's most quiet car, and it has about 220lbs of acoustic insulating materials. To make the Ghost silent, the manufacturer changed the car's frame from steel to aluminum.
Rolls-Royce insulates the Ghost's bulkhead with a "sound-deadening skin." They also modified the windscreen wipers and covered the floor with sound-absorbent materials. The tires aren't left out as they're lined with lightweight foam to reduce noise. Some customers have complained that the silence made them sick.
2 Most Expensive Rolls-Royce
At $28 million, the 2021 Rolls-Royce Boat Tail is the most expensive Rolls-Royce and the most expensive new car. The Boat Tail is a convertible based on the Dawn model. With vehicles like the Boat Tail and the one-off Sweptail, Rolls-Royce is trying to revive the art of coachbuilding.
The Boat Tail is an exquisite creation with a painted wooden hood, and it's different from other Rolls-Royce models. The manufacturer built only three units as the Boat Tail was a commissioned project.
1 Oldest Surviving Rolls-Royce
The oldest surviving Rolls-Royce is the 1904 10 hp, and it was the first car produced after the agreement between Henry Royce and Charles Rolls. Henry Royce's company– Royce Ltd manufactured the car while Charles Rolls' dealership sold it. The 10hp is a two-seater, and it uses a 1800cc engine with a 3-speed transmission system.
Rolls-Royce produced only 16 units between the production timeline 1904-1906. The surviving 10hp still on the road is owned by Mr. Thomas Jr of Scotland, and another 10hp was sold at an auction for £3,421,500 in 2007.