Top marques for the Coupé



If you’re thinking of buying a Rolls-Royce, then now is the time to do so because they’re launching a new Phantom, which will be available in the Middle East soon.

It all started when Rolls-Royce unveiled the 101EX, an experimental car built to explore an exciting new design concept for a modern coupé, in 2006. Wrapped in a sleek, rakish body, the 101EX was an engineering-led study, showcasing the technical and architectural innovation possible in a modern Rolls-Royce car.

Even though it was just an experimental model, the response to it was so phenomenal that Rolls-Royce decided to go ahead and produce it. And so the Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupé was born.

The company proudly revealed it at the recently-held Salon International de l’Automobile in Geneva this year.

Peter Schoppmann, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars’ Regional Director for the Middle East, told Emirates Business: “Two years ago we presented the experimental car 101EX in Geneva for the first time, which explored the concept of a two-door Rolls-Royce coupé model.

The feedback from the Middle East played a major role in our decision to develop a production version of this car. Production of the new model will begin at the company’s manufacturing plant at Goodwood, England in the summer.

“Deliveries to the Middle East are expected from October 2008, with keen interest from buyers already recorded across the region.

“We cannot talk about pricing yet, however the Phantom Coupé will sit between the Phantom Drophead Coupé and the four-door Phantom. The Coupé is the most driver-orientated model in the Phantom family.

“Subtle but impactful differentiators to the convertible are related to the design as well as to engineering features, like the suspension, steering transmission, brakes and gear-shift ratios to provide an incomparable driving experience.”

The Coupé marries cutting-edge technology with a beautifully proportioned, muscular body that exudes power and style. Utterly contemporary in appearance, it nonetheless incorporates timeless Rolls-Royce design cues such as the long bonnet, large-diameter wheels, short front and long rear overhangs and the classic dynamic, rising profile.

The cabin’s sumptuous leather, rich wood grains and cool chrome accents create a driver environment unparalleled in luxury and comfort.

Designed to cover great distances with the minimum of fuss, the Coupé is a sublime choice for a transcontinental trip. Its effortless power is provided by the Phantom’s 6.75-litre V12, producing a phenomenal 453 bhp and 720 Nm of torque.

Agile, fast, long-legged and virtually silent, the Phantom Coupé allows both driver and passengers to emerge unruffled, even after an all-day run.

Peter Schoppmann said: “As the Phantom Drophead Coupé is designed to be the perfect convertible the Phantom Coupé is designed and engineered to be the perfect Coupé – according to one of the maxims of our founders, ‘strive for perfection in everything you do’.

“Chief Designer, Ian Cameron, followed the philosophy that Rolls-Royce has always been about pace, performance and style. One of the aims was to give the Coupé a sense of drama to the outstanding engineering and drivability that are fundamentals of Rolls-Royce cars.”

The front end, with its slim LED sidelights and larger, round driving lamps, has a gently raked, softer-edged appearance, sweeping back over the long bonnet to the strong line of the triangular A-frame.

The front coach-doors are rear-hinged and were newly crafted for use on the Drophead Coupé, enabling all passengers to enter and exit more gracefully, these doors also offer safety benefits – the rear hinging allows an uninterrupted A-pillar, which adds significantly to the car’s overall torsional rigidity.

For ease of operation, the doors may be closed at the simple touch of a button, housed discreetly inside the front quarterlight.

The picnic boot is a wonderfully sociable feature. When lowered, it provides a seating platform for two, with hinges substantial enough to hold a weight of 150kg/330lb.

At the same time, it also offers easy access to the luggage compartment, which has a volume of 395 litres – enough for four sets of golf clubs. The mirror-like finish of the paintwork perfectly sets off the stunning lines of the Coupé.

Each body receives five individual coats of paint and lacquer, with hand-finishing between each layer. It is then polished for five hours to create a lustre that is unsurpassed in the automotive world.

Peter Schoppmann added: “A quite romantic feature is the starlight headliner in the interior, reminiscent of a sky full of stars. We were asked quite often what the inspiration for this stunning option was.

“The answer is quite simple: the same stars which are shining above Goodwood in England also shine brightly above the Middle East.”