Goodwood Goes Electric with 2024 Rolls-Royce Spectre

A modern take on the classic Rolls-Royce coach design is joined by electric power.

  • Rolls-Royce is launching its first all-electric model under the Spectre model name, a two-door, four-seat super coupe estimated to cost $400,000.
  • With 577 hp and 664 lb-ft of torque, the fastback model is set to reach 60 mph in 4.4 seconds and achieve 260 miles of electric range.
  • Following the tenants of luxury, the 2024 Rolls-Royce Spectre is just the start of the company's plan to go fully electric by 2030.

    The full electrification of a manufacturer's model range is a question of when at this point, though certain brands going electric can still be a shock. And Rolls-Royce is one of those brands—long known as the gold standard for luxury—but electrification may actually play in its favor. The company is betting on it, given the introduction of its first all-electric model, the 2024 Rolls-Royce Spectre.

    The Spectre will be the first Rolls-Royce to be fitted with 23-inch wheels in nearly 100 years.
    Rolls Royce

    That's right, the Goodwood, UK, company is starting its journey into the electric future, and with a striking model at that. The styling of the Spectre retains its namesake's squared-off edges and wide track but will set itself apart as the only current two-door offering from Rolls-Royce. (Production of the Wraith coupe and Dawn convertible ended in 2021.) The four-seat Spectre will be priced between the Cullinan SUV and Phantom sedan, with MSRP estimated at $400,000 and first deliveries slated for late in 2023.

    The body style of the new model is significant on its own, but the drivetrain of this Rolls EV is what really stands out. The company has yet to release the specific battery capacities of the Spectre, but it has confirmed the model will have 577 hp and 664 lb-ft of torque. A 0–60-mph time of 4.4 seconds might seem slow by today's mind-blowing EV acceleration standards, but carrying all 6559 pounds of aluminum up to speed is no easy task. Push the pedal even further, and Rolls says you can expect a top speed of 155 mph.

    Starlight doors are another first for Rolls-Royce, joining the Starlight ceiling as a standard feature on the Spectre.

    You wouldn't want to spend much time at that speed though, given the model's EPA estimated range of 260 miles. That's not great by today's standards, especially for the price point, but the hefty curb weight, relative lack of traditional aerodynamics, and 23-inch wheels make for an uphill battle against efficiency.

    Despite the middle-rate range, it's important to remember that a Rolls-Royce isn't made for top-speed runs or even particularly long drives. Ultimately, the car is made for the comfort of its occupants, especially the non-driving ones. And the key ingredient for traditional Rolls-Royce comfort is its "magic carpet ride," technically referred to as the Planar suspension system. Using 18 sensors and a four-wheel steering system, the Spectre's suspension is constantly adjusting as it moves down the road, with the ability to decouple the car's anti-roll bars and prevent the rocking motion that occurs on uneven or undulating roads. It also stiffens the dampers on corner entry to limit body roll and, in turn, the forces felt by passengers.

    A sloping roof line paired with an "aero-tuned" Spirit of Ecstasy figurine make this model the most aerodynamic models from the Rolls-Royce catalogue.
    Rolls Royce

    And the chassis construction is just as important to passenger comfort as the suspension setup is. The company's first electric offering uses a new highly flexible all-aluminum space frame architecture, and the chassis is actually 30% stiffer than any late-model Rolls. The battery has been mounted down low, with the accompanying wiring and climate-control module sandwiched between the cabin floor and the battery. This design provides for a customary low seating position, and the floor-mounted battery actually accounts for 700 kg of sound deadening as well.

    As with other Rolls models, the company will offer customers a number of bespoke interior options, with a detailed list to come.

    Other exterior firsts include the widest grille ever fitted to a Rolls-Royce—while housing 22 LEDs—and the Spectre represents the automaker's most aerodynamic design ever. Plush leather seats in white, brown, and pink (but any color is available, really) adorn the cabin and are complemented by the trademark Starlight ceiling and a new Starlight door. And you even get the legendary door-stowed Rolls-Royce branded umbrella with the Spectre.

    "This incredible motorcar, conceived from the very beginning as our first fully electric model, is silent, powerful and demonstrates how perfectly Rolls-Royce is suited to electrification," the company says. "Spectre's all-electric powertrain will assure the marque's sustained success and relevance while dramatically increasing the definition of each characteristic that makes a Rolls-Royce a Rolls-Royce."

    With a focus on tranquility, it's easy to see why Rolls-Royce is keen on electrification. Smooth acceleration, a lack of noticeable gear shifts, and relative silence are baked into electric drivetrains and are coincidentally the tenets of the Rolls-Royce experience.

    And Rolls-Royce doesn't plan on stopping with the Spectre: The company has announced its entire fleet will go electric by 2030, so Goodwood will be busy. And that's a good thing for luxury buyers, VIP parkers, and chauffeurs everywhere.

    Today we see a production version of Rolls-Royce's all-electric Spectre, and last night Cadillac revealed it's Celestiq EV. Is a rivalry born? Please comment below.

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