Tuner extraordinaire, Vorsteiner, recently prepared a program for the Bentley Continental GT, leading some people to think that the tuner was favoring Bentley in the luxury car market. Well, you can put all those "bias" questions aside because they’ve come back with a separate program for the Continental’s chief nemesis, the Rolls-Royce Ghost.
We certainly have no objections to Vorsteiner’s interest in these two British luxury cars, especially when they have developed a package that maintains the Ghost’s luxury style while also adding functionality to compliment the car’s impressive performance credentials.
For starters, the front end of the Ghost was given a new add-on spoiler to go with a replaceable GT center chin splitter. The changes look subtle aesthetically, but it does add a touch of sportiness to the car’s front profile. From there, Vorsteiner also added new side skirts and blade attachments, as well as integrating wing elements that further add even more aerodynamic enhancements through additional downforce. Over at the rear, you’ll find a new carbon fiber rear deckled spoiler, as well as an add-on rear diffuser, which incidentally, comes with integrated aero fins. All these materials are made of Autoclave pre-preg carbon fiber technology, ensuring that whatever Vorsteiner puts in the Ghost is as strong and durable as any material in the market.
Rounding out all the changes are a new set of 24" 3-piece Forged Aluminum Wheels with factory floating center cap adapters that can be added as an option to the Vorsteiner’s aero package.
Rolls Royce announced its bespoke personalization program at the beginning of 2010 and by August 2011, the company had to expand their operations to meet growing demand. Out of all the Ghost models sold in 2011, 56% were bespoke models, so Rolls Royce doubled the number of bespoke experts working at the Home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood.
As if they needed the extra push to market the bespoke program, Rolls Royce has released two customized Ghost models to illustrate what the program can do with their unique paint colors, coach lines, and tread plates. The customized Ghost models come in Rose Quartz with a Gunmetal metallic hood and Matte Black. Both of them are combined with unique features on the interior, like full natural leather, black carbon fiber veneers, a cupholder lid, and steering wheel spokes.
"It is always our goal to exceed our clients’ highest expectations and fulfill their innermost desires," said Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Rolls-Royce CEO. "With highly bespoke Phantom and Ghost models, we are able to achieve this. The passion with which our bespoke craftspeople create these beautiful cars is reflected in some truly outstanding examples delivered across the globe last year."
We get the whole idea of dressing up a car like the Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe with a comprehensive bodykit, but given what the Rolls already stands for, it does seem like a little too much, doesn’t it?
The people over at Wald International beg to disagree because they’ve just released a pretty daft package for the British luxury car. No matter the consternation we have for such a program, you can’t deny the skills of Wald International, especially when it comes to dressing up cars that are as exclusive as the Phantom Drophead Coupe. To their credit, the Japanese tuner fitted the Rolls with a comprehensive body kit, complete with a new front bumper that comes with a set of vertical LED running lights. The kit also has new air vents that have been cut into the fenders. There’s also a new front lip, mesh air intake inserts, new side skirts, and a new rear bumper that comes with a small rear diffuser with dual exhaust pipes.
All in all, it’s pretty extensive. Maybe even a little too extensive. But give Wald International credit; these guys know how to catch attention with their projects, especially when they use one of the most luxurious cars on the face of the planet.
Unfortunately, the designer was not able to see his work come to life after his unexpected death last April due to a heart attack. Despite his passing on, the Rolls-Royce project continued on and recently, the first of these special edition models was unveiled in front of Bijan’s luxury boutique in Beverly Hills, California.
The luxury Phantom Drophead Coupe, in so many words, has Bijan’s imprint all over it. From the unmistakable bright yellow color of the luxury sedan all the way to the touches of white diamonds embedded in the wood veneer dashboard and the set of crystal glasses tucked in a picnic set in the trunk, the Rolls-Royce Phantom Bijan Edition speaks to the taste and lifestyle of the late, great designer.
While its easy to get mesmerized by the car, it’s also worth noting that this particular Phantom also carries a 6.75-liter V12 engine that produces in excess of 450 horsepower. According to Bijan executives, the plan for the ultra rare Phantom Bijan Edition is to have at least a dozen of them built with each set to be priced from anywhere between $850,000 all the way up to $1.6 million.
Knowing the man and his impeccable taste in cars, there’s a good chance that Bijan Pakzad, wherever he is, is looking down on this car with that million-dollar smile on his face.
Right off the bat, we have to admit that this week’s episode of Top Gear USA was a lot funnier than any other episode this season. The majority of the episode was spent trying to figure out which of the three hosts chose a better luxury car. However, instead of being the long and drawn out segment as found in previous episodes, this challenge made us laugh out loud a few times. The guys were driving around the Hamptons in a 1972 Rolls Royce Silver Shadow, a 1982 Jaguar XJS, and a 1988 Pontiac Fiero turned Ferrari 308. Oh yeah, the Hamptonites just loved that.
In between the search for the best luxury car for $5,000, Tanner Foust got to take a spin in "the Beast," the Porsche 911 GT2 RS and Torchwood star, Arlene Tur took a speedy trip around the Top Gear test track in the Suzuki SX4.
Hit the jump for full details on Top Gear USA: Season 2 Episode 5.
James Bond may be a fictional character to all of us, but the dashing debonair / awesome secret agent is still an inspiration to all of us. Who wouldn’t want to be in his shoes? He’s got a killer job, he scores the hottest women, and best of all - at least in our case - he drives the fanciest cars.
That last part is such an integral part of the Bond legend that an exhibition is actually being planned to showcase the largest collection of James Bond vehicle to ever be displayed. The whole event is being prepared through the collaborative efforts of the UK’s National Motor Museum, Beaulieu and EON Productions, which is doing the groundwork for the event in preparation for the 50th anniversary of Ian Fleming’s Bond franchise.
The exhibit will be held at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, United Kingdom and will run the entire length of the 2012 calendar year.
“Following the success of the first Bond cars exhibition staged at Beaulieu in 2001, we are delighted to be working with EON again on this new display, bringing together the world’s largest collection of Bond vehicles, Beaulieu’s Commercial Director, Stephen Munn said.
The exhibit won’t open for another few months, but it’s safe to say that we’ll be dropping by to check it out if we find ourselves in the area next year.
Seeing as both brands fall under the BMW umbrella, it wasn’t really a far-fetched idea to have British luxury automaker, Rolls Royce, and German carmaker, MINI, tie up for a special edition project. The question wasn’t so much if these two highly regarded brands could collaborate, but more of when they would do it.
Apparently, that question has finally been answered.
At the Shanghai Auto Show, MINI and Rolls Royce will introduce a limited production Cooper S model called the “MINI Inspired by Goodwood’, a direct homage to the latter’s base of operations in Goodwood, England.
The car was developed with the help of the Rolls Royce design team and, together with the folks from MINI, they created a car that will be produced in only 1,000 units. The “MINI Inspired by Goodwood” is decked out with the kind of exclusive and luxury amenities that only Rolls Royce can be known for.
It’s been a long time in the making, but hey, at the very least we finally get to see the car in full production guise. Let’s just all hope that this car won’t cost as much as a Ghost or a Phantom.
UPDATE 08/19/2011:: The whispers of Mini sending some of this special edition MINI’s 1,000 units over to the US were correct, but we don’t have to pay the converted price of $68,000. Nope, official pricing for the Mini GoodWood sits at $52,000, according to reports. This new, lower price still makes the MINI Cooper S "Inspired by Goodwood" the most expensive small premium car. Hey, Rolls Royce inspiration doesn’t come cheap, especially considering the Mini Cooper models in the States cost between $19K and $28K, depending on the model. All in all, Mini will be sending 140 units over to our side of the pond. Orders will begin next month and the first deliveries will be made in the second quarter of 2012. (MotoringFile)
More details on the MINI Cooper S "Inspired by Goodwood" by Rolls-Royce after the jump.
Rolls-Royce isn’t exactly the type of marquee that rolls out special edition models on the fly, but since the company has expanded its in-house Bespoke division, it seemed like a good idea to introduce a special edition range of sedans for the Chinese market.
For their first offering, Rolls-Royce is paying homage to 2012 being the Year of the Dragon.
You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to cross the t’s and dot the i’s on why the British luxury brand has decided to roll out this special edition line. Next year, at least according to the Chinese calendar, is the Year of the Dragon, one of the most revered mythical creatures in the country. So to honor that special occasion - and butter up to the Chinese market - Rolls-Royce is gearing up for a number of Phantom models bearing the Year of the Dragon bespoke package.
UPDATE 11/23/11: It’s only appropriate that a special edition, China-exclusive Rolls-Royce was introduced at a Chinese auto event, particularly that of the Guangzhou Auto Show. And true to Chinese lore, Rolls-Royce will only be releasing eight models of this ultra-exclusive luxury car.
UPDATE 01/29/12: For a car that costs a staggering $1.2 million, you would think that Rolls-Royce would find a difficult time finding buyers for their ultra-exclusive Phantom "Year of the Dragon" Bespoke special edition model. Think again. About as quick as you can say "Kung Hei Fat Choy!", the entire allotment of Year of the Dragon Phantoms have all been spoken, taking only two months for all the units to be spoken for. What recession, right?
Details on the Rolls-Royce Phantom "Year of the Dragon" Bespoke Collection after the jump.
The power of extravagance knows no bounds, especially for those who just can’t seem to get enough of it. Then again, when you have the ability to just throw money around like its disposable paper, we suppose that you can do pretty much anything you want, including plating your Ferrari supercar in gold.
This is the Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano that has been worked on by Hamann so there’s some top-level tuning in the car already. We already saw this car in the past but it’s certainly worth repeating: this bad boy is plated...with gold.
Apparently, the car belongs to a wealthy and high-profile individual from Dubai and was recently spotted in London being accompanied by no less than a Mansory-tuned Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe. If a six-figure Rolls-Royce can serve as the ’bodyguard’ of this gold-plated 599 GTB Fiorano, then it certainly speaks volumes as to how extravagant this 673-horsepower, gold-plated Ferrari really is.
The only thing that boggles our mind is how he can get around town, let alone bring it to another country, without being worried about all the eyes that will inevitably fix their attention on his one-of-a-kind Ferrari.
Check out this gold-plated 599 GTB Fiorano in the streets of London after the jump
Rich and famous individuals around the world are known for leading extravagant lifestyles. Motor vehicles are often a way to show the world just how much money you have and one car in particular does this better than almost any other; the Rolls Royce Phantom. These bespoke automobiles have been the most luxurious and expensive items on four wheels since the company was first started. In the early part of the past century, Rolls Royce was often commissioned by heads of state and wealthy tycoons to build one off custom creations to fulfill their various desires. This 1925 Phantom I is perhaps the most indulgent of all being commissioned by the Maharaja of Kota specifically for the purpose of hunting Bengal Tigers.
Today, it would be very odd to think about taking a Rolls Royce on a dirt road, let alone trudging through mud and brush on a big game hunting trip. Those jobs would be best suited for a Land Rover Defender or even a Mercedes G550, but in 1925 Rolls Royce stood for more than just luxury. These were the most mechanically and structurally sound vehicles being produced and thus provided for the greatest reliability of anything around. Not to mention Rolls Royce was willing to do anything a customer desired as long as the price was right.
This car will be auctioned off at the Bonham Quail Lodge sale on August 19, 2011. It has changed hands several times since being discovered in the late 1970’s and has undergone two extensive restorations. Experts predict that this rare Rolls Royce could fetch anywhere from $750,000 to $1,000,000 when it crosses the block.
Hit the jump for more details on the 1925 Rolls Royce Phantom I