While economic fluctuations and current oil and petrol conditions may affect most carmakers operating in the Middle East, this is not the case for Rolls Royce, especially not its Bespoke program.
The Bespoke studio has also gained further popularity in the Middle East after releasing a number of relevantly themed collections, with “Nautica” being the most recent – a collection of five vehicles, released in June, which pays tribute to Ahmad Ibn Majid, the famed Arab sailor and navigator.
Speaking to Aficionado, Lars Klawitter, the general manager of the Bespoke program at Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, elaborates on the activities and production levels of the brand’s pinnacle design and production studio, and shares his views on the value of the Middle East region.
While Rolls-Royce continues production in limited amounts to maintain its exclusivity and luxurious status, it has been increasing production given heightened client demands.
“Last year, we had the highest-ever levels for Bespoke personalisation in the Middle East with 95 per cent of cars having Bespoke elements in them, the highest in the world,” Klawitter told Aficionado.
One of the most luxurious collections by Rolls-Royce has been the Phantom Limelight, comprising 25 cars. Vehicles belonging to the collection feature personalised door panniers and a new rear seat, created in collaboration with medical professionals to achieve the most relaxed seating postures for the passenger while in motion.
“Although the collection is so limited, all of our key markets in the region have hosted a dedicated event to mark the arrival of the Phantom Limelight, as it is a unique car that appeals to Middle Eastern customers and the uptake has been phenomenal, as every one of these cars has been sold to customers and private collectors just a few months after the global launch,” Klawitter said.
Recently, the brand launched its “Inspired by” collection through its Wraith models.
“So far, we have revealed the Wraith ‘Inspired by Film’ model, with a unique two-tone Silver and Jubilee Silver paint scheme that is inspired by action and adventure in the cinema industry, as well as the Wraith ‘Inspired by Fashion’, which features fine silks throughout, and has been inspired by the ever-dynamic fashion industry.
“The final model in that collection is the Wraith ‘Inspired by Music’, which celebrates Rolls-Royce’s long-standing love affair with the myth and legend of the contemporary music scene, highlighted by the fact that some of the world’s most celebrated artists continue to choose the marque as the ultimate affirmation of their success. “Its effortlessly cool appearance complements the superior Bespoke Audio system; the most encompassing music system on the market,” Klawitter explained.
The Wraith, according to the top executive, is “the ultimate gentleman’s gran turismo, appealing to a younger clientele. With its 624hp engine, it stands as a contemporary homage to the era of effortless and spacious coupés and grand tourers.”
Meanwhile, the “Phantom is the most classic model in our portfolio, created with the passenger in mind and is the pinnacle in ultra-luxury travel,” he added.
Comparing cars to suits, Klawitter said: “The Phantom is the tuxedo, the Ghost is the bespoke tailored business suit and the Wraith is the dinner jacket or blazer.”