crankandpiston takes an in-depth look at the new Rolls-Royce Wraith at a private showing at Goodwood in the UK.
It seems a shame that at this year’s Geneva Motor Show, at which crankandpiston spent a few days, the new Rolls-Royce Wraith was pushed rather gingerly into the shadows by the new LaFerrari, Lamborghini Veneno, Porsche 911 GT3 and the McLaren P1. Away from the hustle and bustle of the Swiss show floor, overly powerful show lights and huge crowds, we got a chance for a more in-depth look at the most powerful Rolls-Royce ever built during a private at Goodwood in the UK.
Amidst an opening round of OJs and canopes, we were given a brief intro to the marque’s new luxury sports coupe. The Wraith name was first used by Rolls-Royce way back in the 1930s (during a two-year production cycle of the original model between 1938 and 1939) and has now been revived for a new gran turismo model that is both faster and more agile car than the marque’s Phantom and Ghost luxury models.
For a non-physical commodity, power is an interesting thing. You can tell people you have it. You can prove you have it. And you can definitely have a lot of fun proving you’ve got as much as you say.
Take the Wraith for instance. Some 624bhp and 590lb ft of torque from the same 6.6-litre twin turbo V12 as used in the Ghost – albeit up from 563bhp – is enough to punch the big beast from 0-100kph in just 4.4 seconds. That’s Aston Martin Vanquish territory, and surely a luxury coupe weighing in excess of 2000kg has no right to be anywhere near that.
One factory tour later (which is unfortunately where the Canon had to be sheathed for security purposes), we got our first look at the Wraith. The new coupe is noticeably lower, wider and shorter than the Ghost, a strong hint at the company’s efforts to improve the agility of the luxury coupe. Let’s not forget though that for all its speed, the new Wraith is a Rolls-Royce first and foremost.
Decked in a pretty striking two-tone colour palette (although our Goodwood show model, which by the way is not the final production version, boasted an equally strong silver), the Wraith showcases a much deeper grille at the front while the large pillarless suicide doors ooze class and bring back old school luxury. Four adults will fit inside easily and comfortably, and there’s still copious space for luggage too.
The price tag will be weighty: we’re well into $320,000+ figures here. But after an almost endless sea of special edition models boasting a slightly different paint scheme and plusher seat cushions, it’s great to see the Spirit of Ecstasy still has a little bit of a wild streak.