Spectre: Rolls-Royce’s First Electric Car Will Be Out in 2023
In an historic announcement, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars announced that on-road testing of its first fully electric motor car is underway. This seminal moment is for the marque. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Chief Executive Officer, Torsten Müller-Ötvös, said: “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.
The use of electric motors is not a new concept for Rolls-Royce. Sir Henry Royce was fascinated by all things electrified, and his first venture, named F. H. Royce and Company, created dynamos, electric crane motors and patented the bayonet-style light bulb fitting.
However, it was Charles Rolls who truly prophesied an electrified future for automobiles. In April 1900 he experienced an early electric motor car named the Columbia and declared its electric drive to be ideal.
Rolls’ prophecy has been the subject of constant consideration during the marque’s Goodwood era. But we have not been satisfied that available technology could support the Rolls-Royce experience. Until now. Now is the time to change the course of the future of luxury.
We embark on this bold new future with a huge advantage. Electric drive is uniquely and perfectly suited to Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, more so than any other automotive brand. It is silent, refined and creates torque almost instantly, going on to generate tremendous power. This is what we at Rolls-Royce call ‘waftability’.
At Rolls-Royce, we have been experimenting with an electric powertrain for some time. In 2011 we revealed 102EX, a fully operational all-electric Phantom. We followed this in 2016 with our fully electric 103EX, which represented our vision for the marque several decades into the future.”
This fundamental change in our powertrain technology requires that we challenge every single aspect of the product before we offer it to the most discerning and demanding individuals in the world—our Rolls-Royce clients.
To do this, we have conceived the most demanding testing programme in Rolls-Royce’s history. We will cover 2.5 million kilometres—a simulation of more than 400 years of use for a Rolls-Royce, on average—and we will travel to all four corners of the world to push this new motor car to the limit.
This Rolls-Royce is the fulfilment of a prophecy and it represents a promise kept as we embark upon a unique undertaking. It is the beginning of a new legacy for our brand. In that spirit, we have decided on a completely new name for this car. A name that is as powerful and evocative as the nameplates that have served us so perfectly for the past century—names like Phantom, Ghost and Wraith. It’s a name that perfectly fits the ethereal and otherworldly environment within which our products exist—a name that we have reserved especially for this moment: Spectre.
Spectre is a name given to otherworldly beings synonymous with great power and apparition; creatures of an alternative realm that make their presence felt through fleeting manifestation. A spectre forces the world to pause. It dominates the space it occupies. Then, as quickly as it appears, it dissipates, leaving a wake of exhilaration, energy, and intrigue.”