Posted on June 23, 2016

In a spectacular event at London’s Roundhouse earlier this week, the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 was presented. The car defines the future of luxury mobility. Codenamed 103EX, it is the marque’s first ever pure ‘Vision Vehicle’.

The Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 presents an intriguing and aesthetically dynamic vision of the future of luxury mobility  – a completely personal, effortless and autonomous Rolls-Royce experience, wrapped in a design that ensures a ‘Grand Sanctuary’ for its occupants, and a ‘Grand Arrival’.

The Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 anticipates the mobility demands of the luxury customer of the future. Brought to life by Rolls-Royce after many months of study and consultation with current patrons of the brand, the car represents their clearly expressed desire for an assurance that the marque’s plans for the future of luxury personal mobility will continue to embody the key attributes that have made Rolls-Royce the preferred marque of the most discerning and powerful patrons in the world for over a Century.

“Today, Rolls-Royce, the world’s leading luxury brand, has defined the future of luxury mobility. The Grand Arrival of the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 boldly points to a bright future for our marque where our patrons’ individual demands for complete and authentic personalisation will be met through an exquisite fusion of technology, design and hallmark Rolls-Royce craftsmanship.” Said Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Chief Executive Officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.

Giles Taylor, Director of Design, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, added: “With the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 we were mindful not to dwell on the past. We wanted to be as innovative as possible and at the same time transcend the design history of the marque”. In creating the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100, the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars design team, led by Director of Design Giles Taylor, distilled four key tenets that not only underpin the elegant solution that is the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100, but epitomise the future of luxury mobility as a whole:

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The Personal Vision

The Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100, as presented in London on Thursday 16 June 2016, is but one example of a number of possible personal visions of a Rolls-Royce of the future.

In the spirit of the great coachbuilt cars of the past, Rolls-Royce will create the chassis of the future, hand-built from the most advanced materials and powered by a zero emissions powertrain. Advanced manufacturing technologies will enable customers to involve themselves even more in the design of the shape, size and silhouette of their personal Rolls-Royce vision. The future customer will commission his or her own concept. Rolls‑Royce will design and manufacture this personal vision of each customer and make every Rolls-Royce a unique Bespoke masterpiece.

The Effortless Journey

For the 105 years since her creation in 1911, the Spirit of Ecstasy, modelled by sculptor and artist Charles Sykes, on Eleanor Thornton, has silently guided every Rolls-Royce and its owner through the momentous events of their lives. She has stood as an elegant presence at some of history’s most notable events. 

Today, the ‘Voice of Eleanor’ inhabits the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100, delivering the dream of an effortless future to her owners. Digitally connected to every aspect of her owners’ lives and her surrounding environment, ‘Eleanor’ becomes their virtual assistant and chauffeur, freeing them of all effort and encumbrance. Imbued with her own artificial intelligence, she works intuitively to advise her owners on itineraries, schedules and options before they leave their residence, reminding about appointments and tasks and making suggestions to ease any anticipated impediments.

This Effortless Journey is enhanced by the hallmark Rolls-Royce ‘magic carpet ride’ delivered through a blend of a futuristic, powerful, zero-emission drivetrain and advanced suspension that sees the vehicle almost skim across the road surface. As a V12 combustion engine is most unlikely to exist in the future, one can only surmise how this Rolls-Royce will be powered.

The Grand Sanctuary

Entering the Grand Sanctuary, our passengers step in unbowed, with consummate grace and dignity, as with the state carriages of old, taking their place on the best seat in the house. Cocooned in the futuristic but handcrafted lounge atmosphere, the coach door and clamshell canopy glide closed to envelop them in uninterrupted silence and luxury.

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The cabin is encircled by the most modern handcrafted fine-line Macassar wood panelling, sweeping across the interior from the coach door, continuing around behind the generous OLED screen and up beside the second passenger to the side of the sofa. This ensures a continuous, beautifully clean and sculptural surface when the screen is extinguished. This sense of space is accentuated as our passengers’ view from their seats is uninterrupted by a cockpit or steering wheel which are now superfluous. From their powerful position within the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100, “All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players…”.

The Grand Arrival

The Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100’s iconic, imposing and futuristic presence ensures a Grand Arrival for its occupants. Yet whilst it powerfully expresses the future of luxury, it remains constant to the iconic tropes of any true Rolls-Royce: The Spirit of Ecstasy, the Pantheon grille, the long bonnet and the iconic proportions of the entire vehicle.

The Grand Arrival of the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 is first signalled by the Spirit of Ecstasy and Pantheon grille illuminating to cast an ethereal, otherworldly glow from the front of the car. As this vision of the future gracefully sweeps up to its destination, the ethereal glow spreads from the trailing edge of the front wheel arch to the rear of the single coach door, signalling that something momentous is about to happen. As the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 gracefully comes to a halt, something magnificent occurs.

Hinged on the left of the vehicle, the glass canopy lifts to allow the occupant to stand whilst providing shelter from above and behind. Then, in one effortless movement, the single coach door sweeps open and a step emerges from below the running board. As a final flourish, a red light is projected, carpet-like, from the underside of the step as a welcome. “The Grand Arrival gesture of the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 creates a stage for our important passengers as they arrive at their ultimate destination,” comments Taylor. “It is an expression of our intrinsic understanding of the possibilities for a true luxury brand and the desires of its customers.”

The Personal Vision, the Effortless Journey, the Grand Sanctuary and the Grand Arrival. Rolls-Royce’s vision of the next 100 years. Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100. A vision of the future of luxury.

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