Silence heals. Especially in today’s hectic and NOISY time, escaping to silence is as refreshing as visiting a therapist, massage and sauna. Together. But the silence can sometimes be too much. The complete absence of sound can also disorient a person when his sensory receptors, usually bombarded with sensations, are suddenly deprived of their absence.
That’s what the developers of Rolls-Royce found out – they found that they made the Spectre prototype, their first purely electric model, far too quiet. That’s why they had to rework the noise reduction to slightly increase the volume of the ambient noise from the “muted” level to the first level of volume, so that only distant murmurs and whispers reach the crew’s ears in the interior. Even so, the Specter is by far the quietest car I’ve ever driven.
And also the most comfortable, because it floats on the asphalt so undisturbed that nothing compares to it. It overcomes all the bumps, potholes and other pitfalls of road users with a noiseless screeching of the wheels (And this is, please, nice, huge discs with a diameter of 23 inches!) and a gentle rocking of the body, small movements are largely negated by a soft leather chair in which behind the wheel I roll out.
But thanks to the electric drive, even a Korean car manufacturer can build a quiet, comfortable and smooth-driving car, which everyone laughed at twenty years ago. Even such a seven-seat BMW with an electric drive has raised the level of comfort on board by a notch, it even has automatic electric door closing. So how will Rolls-Royce differentiate itself from the competition in the electric era?
This only crossed my mind until the moment I first saw the Specter with my own eyes parked on the street. He is HUGE (the Ghost parked next to him suddenly looked rather sickly) and exudes a completely unique charisma of a self-assured gentleman that will simply win you over. It also stands out from the gray with a unique pink Morganite paint (contrasting with the Gunmetal Black hood and roof) inspired by pink emerald, one of the 44,000 possible colors you can get your Rolls-Royce in.
After all, the incredible level of individualization is another argument for Rolls-Royce. It’s not only about the choice of paint or the color and material coordination of the interior, which is completely under your control (the stylists of the British car company are very willing to guide you if you feel a little lost in this area), but the creators will listen to your every wish, for example, in the design of the seats and decor (it is not the problem of embroidering on them or otherwise artistically expressing whatever you want), or even having a custom car built for you. Your imagination is only limited by the size of your account.
From an amazingly cozy cabin full of refined materials, boasting top-notch workmanship and care for even the smallest detail, you can make a very personalized environment that will reflect your exceptional personality – because every Rolls-Royce customer is an individual with a very specific life story, taste, wishes and preferences.
But all of them love comfort at the five-star level (okay, probably more like seven- or even eight-star) and agree that they only want the best. And only one brand can offer it to them – even in the field of electromobility. You’re probably laughing, surely millionaires wouldn’t want to be scared off by a limited range or get their hands dirty with charging cables and then stuff themselves with soft-serve burgers before their car charges. But apart from practical reasons (for example, trouble-free access to the centers of world capitals, etc.) and enthusiasm for new technologies, purchasing a Specter is a matter of self-indulgence.
Since the beginning of Rolls-Royce’s existence, it has been a pursuit of perfection in the field of driving comfort, and all cars with the Spirit of Ecstasy statue on the front do indeed drive quietly, smoothly and comfortably, but none of them drive as quietly, flow as smoothly and float down the road as just like Spectre. And none of them can accelerate as casually – gently when you’re gentle on the gas pedal, but also surprisingly nimble when you stomp it all the way to the bushy carpet.
Gentlemen don’t usually talk about boring numbers, but this time we’ll make an exception because they’re pretty juicy. The Specter is powered by two electric motors (one on each axle) with a total output of 585 horsepower, which catapult the almost three-ton monster from rest to 100 km/h in a very exciting 4.5 seconds. That doesn’t automatically make the Specter a sports car, because the sport is a little too much… sweaty for a true gentleman. But know that it’s very reassuring to know how much power you have at your command when needed (merging into a faster lane, overtaking, etc.).
So the Specter can be very nimble (just prepare it before a corner and load it on the way out) and surprisingly a driver’s affair (which is why it has a two-door coupe body), but at its core it is a true grand tourer, a reassuring long-distance traveler. Of course, in the intentions of Rolls-Royce owners. The limited range (we’re talking about 500 kilometers) doesn’t bother them, because they drive their cars an average of 6,000 kilometers a year, and when they need to cover a distance of more than 500 kilometers in one day, they prefer to sit in their private jet…
But what’s most fascinating about the RR Specter is how incredibly natural it feels – the start button is to the left of the steering wheel, to the right behind it is the gear selector which you pull towards you and down to start forward, the ride is still quiet and comfortable, just now a little more. Nothing forces you to do things differently here. Nothing here screams, “Look, I’m cool, I ride electric!” The only difference is the added “B” gear mode, increasing the level of recuperation, so you can (but don’t have to) drive it with just one pedal.
The assignment for Specter was not to create the perfect electric car with the Rolls-Royce logo, but first and foremost to build the perfect Rolls-Royce that has an electric drive. Do you feel the difference? Many customers probably don’t even notice it, because when people at the car company asked them about the engine part of their car, almost half said that they didn’t really care what their new car would be powered by – that is, as long as it was a real Rolls-Royce.
We thank Výstaviště Praha for the opportunity to take photos in its premises.
And Spectre, without a doubt, is. It is not a technological toy for modern car enthusiasts, nor is it an appeasement to the green conscience of the car company or its customers. It is a new generation car that uses all the advantages of a modern electric drive and deepens the characteristics typical of cars of this brand. Charles Rolls and Henry Royce would nod their heads in appreciation as technical progress made it possible to create the perfect Rolls-Royce. Bow down to the new king of comfort and luxury!
And what does this fun cost? The car company is traditionally tight-lipped about price information – not only because if you have to ask, you don’t have it, but especially because every customer can customize their car to their heart’s content, and the price of individual cars can thus differ quite fundamentally. Officially, however, it fits between the Cullinan and the Phantom in terms of price. The test piece had a price tag of 470,000 euros, i.e. some 11.5 million crowns. Tax-free. So what, do you have savings? If so, you’ll still have to wait two years for the new Spectre, that’s how much interest there is in it.
|2× synchronous electric motor
|430 kW (585 hp)
|permanent reduction gear
|all four wheels
|2 890 kg
|Acceleration 0-100 km/h
|up to 530 km
|AC 11 kW, DC 200 kW
|Wheels and tires
|5 475/1 996/1 573 mm
|3 210 mm
|Volume of the luggage compartment