Well, someone had to pick the Rolls-Royce Wraith and it might as well have been me. Not least because it guaranteed a sybaritic swoosh from my London base to our Welsh photo location, but there were many more reasons why I was so keen to promote it as one of this year’s stars.
The Wraith, you see, is apt demonstration of Rolls-Royce attempting to shake itself free from conservative constraints. So this car is the company serving up a different take on the Rolls model that was so successfully reimposed when BMW took the reins in 2001.
The Wraith is Rolls showing us its sportier side. Not least through the striking fastback shape that, I’ll admit, was not entirely appealing when we first saw it unveiled at the company’s Goodwood HQ. Yet the look of the car was transformed when I first saw it on the road. Now I love it. So does everyone else, judging by the numerous thumbs-up the car got during its four days with us.
That sportiness is apparent on the road, too. Sort of. In truth, of all the cars that we assembled in Wales, the Wraith doesn’t stack up that well in the purest sense.