Rolls-Royce to Stop Selling Gasoline Cars | Automatic features
In nine years, Rolls-Royce will stop selling gasoline vehicles, CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös said in a September 29 announcement. The first of the company’s planned all-electric portfolio, the Specter sedan, will arrive by the fourth quarter of 2023.
“With this new product, we are setting our benchmarks for the full electrification of our entire product portfolio by 2030,” said Müller-Ötvös. “Until then, Rolls-Royce will no longer be in the business of producing or selling internal combustion engine products.”
Müller-Ötvös described the news as the most important decision in the brand’s history since Charles Rolls and Henry Royce agreed they would build cars together on May 4, 1904.
Since its inception, Rolls-Royce has been at the forefront of powerful V12 engine technology and quiet, smooth excellence for the world’s richest and most demanding customers. Many of its most iconic models, from the early Rolls-Royce Phantoms to the modern Cullinan, used the company’s famous 12-cylinder combustion engine technology. As recently as 2019, Müller-Ötvös said he would keep the V12 “as long as possible”.
While Specter will be Rolls-Royce’s first fully formed production electric car, the brand had already experimented with a fully operational fully electric Phantom called 102EX in 2011; a 103EX electric prototype followed in 2016. Rolls-Royce does not currently offer any hybrid vehicles among its fleet which includes the Phantom sedan, Cullinan SUV, Ghost sedan, Wraith coupe and Dawn convertible.
The electric motor was a concept familiar even to the founders of Rolls-Royce: Henry Royce’s first company, named FH Royce and Company, created dynamos, electric crane motors, and bayonet bulbs. In 1900, Charles Rolls drove an electric car named Columbia and declared it “ideal,” according to Rolls-Royce records.
But Royce noted that the electric car would not become mainstream until a charging network was established. Many would say the time has not yet arrived, as BMW vehicles charge through EVgo’s network of just 800 fast chargers nationwide. (Presumably, the Rolls-Royce Specter would charge in a well-appointed home rather than resort to the indignity of charging in public with the masses.)
Further details on the Specter remain scarce, including pricing. While early rumors say the new vehicle may share engines with BMW’s i7, a spokesperson also declined to discuss the upcoming vehicle’s drivetrain.
Rolls-Royce News works to follow parent company BMW AG as much as anything else. BMW recently unveiled its very first all-electric SUV, the BMW iX, which will start delivery in March 2022. It will soon start delivering its i4 all-electric sedan as well. Earlier this month, the automaker increased its battery cell orders to $ 24 billion to keep pace with growing demand for electric cars. During the first half of 2021, electric vehicles represented 11% of the group’s deliveries.
Meanwhile, rival Bentley has announced that it will launch a fully electric vehicle by 2025. Bentley has been selling hybrid vehicles for years.
Specter will be built on the aluminum space architecture currently featured in the $ 455,000 Rolls-Royce Phantom sedan and designed to support all future Rolls-Royce powered cars. The company says it is currently undergoing tests by company engineers to ensure its indestructibility – a simulation that approaches “400 years of use.”