The goddess of victory will soon arrive on the white-hot battlefield of EVs as Royce-Royce reveals its bold plans for an all-electric future.
On September 29, Rolls-Royce unveiled its first BEV prototype, aptly named Spectre, which is in line with the automaker’s prevailing mystic-themed naming convention.
Rolls-Royce cofounder Charles Rolls was among one of the first to get a taste of EVs in 1900. At the time, he believed that, in spite of the EV’s lack of stench and vibration, charging remained a major issue that could not be resolved in the short run. After more than a century, the future of EVs that he foresaw has finally arrived.
"Today, [...] I am proud to announce that Rolls-Royce is to begin the on-road testing programme for an extraordinary new product that will elevate the global all-electric car revolution and create the first – and finest – super-luxury product of its type,” says Rolls-Royce CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös in a press release. “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."
▲ Despite the heavy camouflage, the Spirit of Ecstasy that is Rolls-Royce’s signature hood ornament is never out of style.
Interestingly, Rolls-Royce has provided virtually no details regarding the Spectre, apart from the name and some photos of the vehicle in camouflage. The automaker indicates that vehicle seen in the photos is, appearance-wise, about as close to the officially released model as possible.
A definite leader in internal combustion engine (ICE) development throughout human history, Rolls-Royce has manufactured engines for cars, planes, and even battleships. As for the automotive world in particular, Rolls-Royce engines are synonymous with flagship vehicles. Along with the release of its first EV, however, Rolls-Royce is also announcing its foray into an all-electric future starting in 2030.
Rolls-Royce aims to terminate all production and sales of ICE vehicles nine years from now. It should be noted that, given Rolls-Royce’s positioning, physical dimensions, and use cases, transitioning to fully electric vehicles does car owners practically no harm. Not only will car owners get to enjoy the benefits of EVs (silence, lack of vibration, and more smart functionalities for driver-vehicle interaction), but issues such as charging, driving range, and maintenance fees are also unlikely to anything but minor inconveniences.
In light of various automakers’ pace of vehicle electrification, it’s probably safe to assume that we’ll get a more comprehensive look at the Rolls-Royce Spectre’s appearances and specs sometime next year. As for its retail price, taking a conservative estimate would be prudent, and US$900,000 appears conservative enough.