Rolls gets sporty with Wraith coupe at Geneva
Watch out Bentley — here comes Rolls' new new 624-horsepower coupe.
The elegant, traditional Rolls-Royce stand has a new shape on display at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show — and what a bold, dramatic-looking thing it is. We've been teased about the Wraith for ages now, and at last the covers have come off. The response is decidedly mixed.
There's no denying the sheer scale of it. The combination of length, 2-door body style and enormous, flowing roof makes it look absolutely unique. A Bentley Continental GT seems almost compact by comparison.
But that roof — it's a head-turner. Maybe we're not used to the idea of a Rolls-Royce sports coupe, but the fact that it is one on such a grand scale will take some time to comprehend. We said the same about the Phantom when it was launched. Either way, the Wraith is here to create yet another distinctive silhouette in the luxury showrooms of the world.
2013 Rolls-Royce Wraith
The new car is a landmark for Rolls, too. Along with massive speed, the British luxury automaker is claiming it's the most agile vehicle ever to wear the Spirit of Ecstasy bonnet mascot. The Wraith gets a 6.6-liter 624-horsepower twin-turbocharged V12 engine bor-rowed from the Ghost.
What's hot? Shorter, lower and wider than the Ghost — and with retuned suspension and steering — the Wraith should deliver on the promise of a sportier, more agile Rolls. A new 8-speed auto gearbox that uses satellite signals to sense where the car is on the road, selecting the appropriate gear, is also very cool.
What's not? Options such as the 1,340 individual hand-woven lights in the Starlight headliner — a first outside the marque's Phantom model, incidentally — are beautifully luxurious and suitably opulent, but they're bound to come at a cost over the already healthy list price.
How much and when? The Rolls-Royce Wraith will cost around $318,000. Expect prices to get significantly higher if buyers get carried away with the bespoke options. The first vehicle deliveries are slated for autumn 2013.
MSN Autos' verdict? It's big and bold, yet the traditional Rolls-Royce cues are still there: The flying lady still flies, the grille is still upright — albeit shrunken and recessed into the nose — and the lines still purposefully enhance its size rather than conceal it. It's a Wraith you cannot shake.