Rolls-Royce is giving new meaning to its “RR” logo and by that we mean Rock and Roll. Yes, for the latest special edition ‘Inspired By Music’ Wraith the automaker is taking cues from the rock ‘n roll years of bygone eras.
“Wraith ‘Inspired by Music’ appeals to those looking to Rolls-Royce for unique and creative motor cars. Its effortlessly cool appearance complements the superior Bespoke Audio system; the contemporary use of copper creates an atmospheric setting for the most encompassing music system on the market,” says Torsten Müller Ötvös, Chief Executive Officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.
The high-end automaker went all out on the special Wraith. The design takes the Bespoke Audio system to the next level and creates what it calls ‘the most exclusive music venue.’
The Bespoke system, that the automaker claims is the most exhaustively designed sound system in automotive history, delivers audio perfection so exact that before any interior changes were made designers consulted with the Chief Audio Engineer.
The 1300W, 18-channel system belts out tunes using two bass speakers, seven tweeters, and seven mid-range speakers. Not to mention the two ‘exciter’ speakers that are hand-fitted into the headlining, just so at ear level, so you feel like you’re at a private concert in your car. Or so claims Rolls-Royce.
Aside from the audio system, the car doesn’t snooze on looks either. You’ll find copper details throughout the car, beginning on the exterior with ‘Lyrical Copper’ paint that is used in a blend of a brushed and a polished texture.
Inside, the copper theme continues with specially designed speaker grilles with the words ‘Bespoke Audio.’ Copper color door inserts continue the theme and begin at the front of the cabin before curving back to the rear. The cabin gets rounded out with woven leather door panniers and floor mats. The cabin’s fascia and seat bullets get the copper treatment, too and you’ll even find them in the analog clock, which has been crafted with chaplets of both copper and silver while the radial lines of the outer bezel is designed to look like a vinyl record.
The automaker is also known for its flair for entertaining press releases. For some must read historical creative writing, check out the tale of Rolls-Royce’s Rock and Roll years below.
Rolls-Royce: the ‘Rock & Roll’ years
In January 1961, Elvis Presley walked into the Beverley Hills Rolls-Royce dealership. Flush with the success of his music career and a five-year movie deal, he ordered a Rolls-Royce Phantom V; the only motor car in the world that could possibly befit his status as the ‘King of Rock & Roll’. From that day on, a Rolls-Royce motor car became the conveyance of choice for the music scene’s burgeoning elite.
Many of these cars have taken their place in automotive and music folklore. John Lennon, for example, acquired a Phantom V in 1965. During his ownership he commissioned a number of cutting-edge additions for the time including; a television, portable refrigerator, record player and the first blacked-out windows to appear on a car in England. He was so enamoured with the interior comfort of the finest riding car in the world, he is reported to have converted the rear bench-seat into a double bed.
However, it is his car’s exterior that ensures its place in the pantheon of famous Rolls-Royces. Not satisfied with the Phantom’s stately Valentines Black finish, he commissioned a Dutch art collective to re-paint the car in a psychedelic motif designed to mirror the decorations on fairground caravans. The result was not met with universal acclaim, with Lennon often recounting the tale of a woman who chased the car, shouting, “You swine! You swine! How dare you do that to a Rolls-Royce!”
One particular story resulting from the music world’s love affair with Rolls-Royce has segued from folklore to infamy. It concerns The Who drummer, Keith Moon and the night of his 21st birthday at the Holiday Inn in Flint Michigan. Legend goes that a somewhat high spirited Mr Moon drove his Rolls-Royce into the hotel’s swimming pool. This is categorically untrue and is probably an overblown conflation of two stories.
The first, involves a regrettable yet entirely understandable lapse of concentration, with Mr Moon failing to fully secure his Rolls-Royce’s handbrake. Unfortunately he had parked on a slope leading to a half-constructed swimming pool. The car made a characteristically graceful descent down the hill before coming to rest at the bottom of the unfilled pool.
The second is a little closer to the legend. On purchasing a new American car he tried to charge it to the band’s account, naturally they refused to indulge his request. Mr Moon expressed his displeasure by parking the car in an ornamental pond before telephoning the dealer to take it away. Not something he would ever have done to his beloved Rolls-Royce.