#144, Rolls-Royce is back with a wicked ghost of a machine

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Rolls-Royce has long represented elegance and sophistication in automobiles most often named after ghosts. There have been years of exception. Used Rolls-Royce models, particularly in the company’s native England, were hard to sell for years.

But now the bespoke machines are back in a big way. In 2019, Rolls-Royce sold more than 5,100 vehicles worldwide, the best annual sales volume in the company’s 116-year history.

The 2020 Rolls-Royce Wraith defines power, opulence and obsession.
The 2020 Rolls-Royce Wraith defines power, opulence and obsession. Image © Bruce Aldrich/2020

Elizabeth Williams, the company’s product communications manager, discusses the Rolls-Royce return to prominence on this week’s episode of The Weekly Driver Podcast.

Rolls-Royce has a 116-year legacy

Co-hosts Bruce Aldrich and James Raia discuss all things Rolls-Royce with Williams — the legacy of the brand to the current lineup.

The podcast episode seemed like a natural after my recent opportunity to review a 2020 Rolls Royce Wraith.

The Wraith remains the company’s high-performance model. It features a twin-turbocharged 6.6-liter V12 engine that produces 624 horsepower. It’s the most powerful car the company has ever made. It weighs 5,380 pounds but has serious, controlled speed.

Named after the Scottish word meaning the image of a ghost or spirit, The Wraith debuted in 2013 as a 2014 model.

For 2020, The body style is a two-door, pillar-less coupe with iconic suicide doors. The door handles are likely the largest ever installed in a car. Their girth suggests they weigh more than a Chevy Spark.

The Wraith’s interior is an opulent living room where the old world meets modern, understated technology. The analog features are complemented by the digital age working in the background.

Every surface has a unique texture and color. The stitching and hides are different. Rolls-Royce has all the top-scale necessities in the back, but it forgot a place for adult-sized legs, so the rear seats are only for the small

A Rolls-Royce’s performance is always at least equally matched by its beauty. The lines are a juxtaposition. Its battle-tank strength front flows into elegant curves at the rear of the beast.

The Wraith offers a poised and unassuming in city driving — as if a Rolls-Royce can be understated. Feel the need to accelerate to merge into traffic at ease or maneuver around a pending situation, the Rolls’ power prevails.

Beyond the Wraith, Williams discusses the uniqueness of Rolls-Royce, including the new Black Bade trim. It’s a $50,000 option — 21-inch carbon wheels to illuminate treadplates.

Rolls-Royce extravagance also includes signature features, the shooting star headliner to its Teflon-coated hidden umbrella.

Williams details who’s buying the Wraith and its stature as a vehicle weighing more than 5,000 pounds, possessing 624 horsepower and with 0-to-60 miles per hour acceleration in 4.4 seconds

Please join for an episode full of facts and figures and the glorious history of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.

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Please send comments and suggestions for new episodes to James Raia via email: [email protected]

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