Rolls-Royce’s next new model will be a Wraith convertible, according to the Goodwood-based company’s CEO, Torsten Müller-Ötvös.
Speaking at the UK launch of the Ghost-based Wraith coupe, a two-door four seater recently displayed at the New York motor show, Müller-Ötvös suggested attention would turn to creating the open version once deliveries of the coupé - whose UK price of £235,000 was revealed this week - start at the end of this year. The car will be displayed for a week in the window of Harrods, Knightsbridge, described as "the Rolls-Royce of department stores".
However, Müller-Ötvös put the kibosh on widespread suggestions that Rolls-Royce was planning to build an SUV.
The matter had not been considered, he insisted, but if it were, he believed it was doubtful that an SUV would have either the gravitas or the effortless driving characteristics that make “a true Rolls-Royce”. But the company remained open-minded in the longer-term about considering new models.
Rolls-Royce expects both the Wraith coupé and convertible, the fastest and most-powerful production Rolls-Royces ever built, to find most customers in the US, where sales are “going well”.
Production of the new Wraith is likely to push Rolls-Royce output at Goodwood close to its capacity, Müller-Ötvös reveals. The company currently sells around 900 Phantom and 2500 Ghost saloons a year.
Wraith production is expected to add around 1200-1500 more cars, and require a move to three shifts a day. Despite this production hike, there is no plan to move some final assembly away from the UK, Müller-Ötvös says. “Rolls-Royces are built in Goodwood,” he says, “and we have no plans to change that.”