103EX: why the Future makes sense to a Rolls – Royce

According to Thorsten Müller – Otvos, with the cessation of the production of the Phantom VII, Rolls – Royce closes the first cycle of its rebirth under the umbrella of the BMW group, opened with its launch in 2003. This brilliant renaissance has been accompanied by an internal tension that is embodied in all the corporate language of the brand: the to combine the historical weight of the “old” with a present that is modern and based on the principles of excellence and cutting-edge technique. At this juncture the “Vision NEXT 100” is probably much more than a spectacular “Concept car” built to commemorate the centenary of BMW, and becomes a map in which to guess the future in the short and long term of the brand.

rsz_p90223424_highresIn Rolls – Royce prefer to refer to “the Vision NEXT 100” as “experimental car“, hence the name internal 103EX. The “EX” are the cars fully functional in that the mark dumps his technical innovations, such as in a laboratory, from the 1EX Henry Royce in 1919, hence it has to look at this car with a lot of attention. With BMW it has been 4 experimental and 3 of them have turned into production cars immediately: 100 and 101 EX, base Phantom and Phantom Coupe and the 200 FORMER, anticipated by the Ghost. The 102 EX, a laboratory of powerplant electrical on a Phantom, it was not of its laboratory phase. Never an “experimental” Rolls I had looked as far into the future as this 103EX, without ceasing to raise questions or expectations for the short-term.

rsz_p90223444_highres why Electric? Was expected, and therefore, the press kit contains a resounding statement: “As the V12 engines internal combustion not exist in the future, one must conjecture what should be the energy that will move to the Rolls – Royce“. It is not often that a luxury brand contends so so clear that in the future, their cars do not go to combustion engines, especially in the case of V12.

A delivery of electrical power linear, silent, smooth and “effortless” fits perfectly with the spirit of the brand

however the engineers of Rolls – Royce at the beginning of the TWENTY-first century have known how to adapt the spirit of the original vehicles of the brand to the technology of the future. Move a Rolls with electrical power fits like a glove in the own DNA of the cars of Goodwood, even though it is accidental. In the “London to Edinburgh Challenge1911 a Silver Ghost made the journey between the two cities in the last gear, beating the time and consumption of a Napier much more powerful. Not by chance it was said that in this car the first 3 gears were only used for maneuvering or to the mountain. 100 years after the smoothness, the silence, and the displacement “without effort” are still signs of identity, as we were able to check in motor in our test of the Ghost Series II. That is to say, a power delivery that is linear, silent, smooth and “effortless” is ideal for a Phantom of the future… , through a powertrain’s electric and not of a V12 engine is, at bottom, irrelevant.

rsz_p90223425_highres do you Freelance? The enjoyment at the wheel is great but… what is that Rolls – Royce have not always been, in a certain way, cars can not drive?. The “driver’s school” of the trademark has been subject to all sorts of popular legends, but above all indicates that, from a century ago, in the case of vehicles for their owners to move with the maximum comfort… in the back seat. Perhaps what we had in front of the noses so long that it now becomes a crushingly logical. What could be a Rolls in the future, but autonomous?.

What surprises us a Rolls – Royce-employed? What is that there have always been cars for the “not driving”?

The partnership announced by BMW with Intel and Mobileye to develop the driving autonomous will replace the Mr. Fleck that led to Kipling by France by an artificial intelligence with a woman’s name: Eleanor, in homage to Eleanor Thornton, actress, model and muse of Charles Sykes to create the “Spirit of ecstasy”.

All of this is acceptable but perhaps the real question is: what Is the point of a Rolls – Royce in a future of autonomous cars, electric and “car sharing”? The 103EX shows that yes: from Goodwood have made an interpretation of the history of their products and their clientele that advances a niche that perhaps no one had paid attention in a realistic way up to now: the machine of scroll of conglomerate presence in the future. In our “smartcities” in the morning there will still be elites wealthy who simply will not use transport shared as now we do not find in the Metro. In a way, the 103EX look at a future in which a Rolls – Royce returns to be exclusive and not to be distinguished from the other cars, but be distinguished from other forms of travel.

rsz_p90223447_highres how Customizable? “The Vision NEXT 100 utilizes the best technological advances to permit the return of the true construction of body-to-measure”, says the press note. In the last decade there has been much discussion about the influence that will have the new architecture driving the electrical aspect of the car of the future. Rolls has the answer from a century ago: until the arrival of the Silver Cloud in 1956, his cars served as a chassis rolling with engine, since the customers did all the bodywork, the specialists who carried it out to the letter.

The 103EX plant the basis for a return to a golden age of coachwork made to measure of the customer, a tailor shop for cars

The platform is composed by the batteries, electric motors and trains rolling 103EX are the perfect item through which to return to the customization of bodies that take the concept of “Bespoke” to a new level.

Surely it is no coincidence that Giles Taylor refers to the 10EX 1925 as one of the sources of inspiration for the “Vision NEXT 100”, since the experimental car was the prelude to the Phantom. If the Silver Ghost of 1906 had thickened the legend of reliability and refinement of mechanical of the brand, the Phantom also added the concept of exclusive luxury. His presentation coincided with the rise of the body closed, of the “Art Deco” (Rolls already honoured in 2012) and fashion and design in the modern sense. The result was a golden age of the body, an authentic “tailoring for cars”, which in England gave names just as relevant as Barker, Mulliner or Hooper; not by chance that the brand is allowed to include in your press kit a quote from… Coco Chanel: “simplicity is the basis of all elegance”.

rsz_p90223867_highres what Is the 103EX a sketch for the next Rolls – Royce?

To a brand whose flagship, the Phantom, has met seven (7) generations in 88 years, the assertion of Muller – Otvos about the “end of cycle” can only generate a lot of excitement. The new generation of Rolls – Royce, starting with the Phantom VIII and the expected off-road Cullinan, take the brand into the doors of a futuristic 2030 and it is reasonable to ask if there will be in the 103EX features of this future generation, in addition to the expected driving semi-autonomous, or the presence of hybrid engines.

In the 103EX are the traits of a new generation of cars that will lead to Rolls – Royce until the doors of 2030

If the source of inspiration for the team of Giles Taylor has been in the Phantom I, II and III, I think we can expect a style that, without being disruptive, it will be clearly novel. Possibly the new Phantom will present a greater fluidity in their forms and lightness in their proportions but without losing its strong presence through, for example, the front-end, with greater prominence, while the fins front and rear of the “Vision NEXT 100”, a synthetic homage to the bodies of the 20’s and 30’s, become a cross-cutting element to the whole range.

Cullinan, a car that will premiere a segment completely new to the brand and whose inspiration could be in the Silver Ghost and Phantom of the interwar period, it will likely take the stylized silhouette of two volumes 103EX and some features, such as the line of roof down, the rear in the form of a “stern of ship” and the marked fins to compose a body fluid with a clear air of family and the time differential between the luxury SUV.

rsz_p90223433_highresBut whatand the grill is typical with the air of a Greek temple Rolls? as are you observers, you must have fallen in that of the “Vision NEXT 100” is very different to the one that assembles the current range, horizontal format from the Silver Shadow of 1965. The 103EX presents a grill net vertical in the “pediment” of the Greek temple spans the width of the whole hill even above the headlights. Judging by the signs, I would say that it is very possible that in this new cycle of Rolls – Royce which inaugurated the Phantom VIII and the Cullinan the grill again to adopt proportions vertical, and the gable extends to the whole width of the snout at a renewal unusual gable palladiano.

What is certain is that for Rolls – Royce the 103EX is a map on which the road to the future seems like a modern version of the path from its source… and that is much, much more interesting than doing a remake.

Source:Rolls – Royce Motor Cars | motor | Rolls Royce and Bentley Archives
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