FEB 18th 2015

Rolls‑Royce SUV gets the go ahead: an open letter from the bosses


It has been mooted for some time, and now the confirmation is here: Rolls-Royce is going to build an SUV. Not that the open letter from chairman Peter Schwarzenbauer and chief executive Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes ever uses the phrase ‘SUV’ – after all, ‘utility’ has never been what R-R is about, and it almost certainly never will be.

In fact, there’s a noticeable lack of any reference to 4x4s or even a euphemism for the genre. The closest Rolls-Royce gets to confirming what the new car actually is comes in its description as a ‘high-bodied Rolls-Royce designed to satisfy the contemporary, highly mobile lifestyles of our discerning clients around the world.’

The focus of the letter is on Rolls-Royce’s heritage for all-terrain exploration and a focus on delivering the cars that customers want. One has to wonder whether much of that demand comes from China. There’s a new phrase too – ‘Effortless … Everywhere.’ So, what do you think of the prospect of a Rolls-Royce SUV? We’ve reproduced the open letter in full below… scroll down


An open letter from the chairman an chief executive of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars on the subject of a new Rolls-Royce

The launch of Phantom in 2003 marked the beginning of the renaissance of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars. Since then, we have set a new benchmark for what a super-luxury car should be – unique, hand-crafted, beautiful and rare. Often imitated, Phantom has never been equalled and continues to be hailed as ‘The Best Car in the World’ by our customers and media alike.

Twelve years later, after the introduction of successful new models like Ghost and Wraith, Rolls-Royce stands proudly at the pinnacle of British luxury manufacturing, confirming our custodianship of this precious marque.

Now we have reached another seminal moment in Rolls-Royce’s 111-year journey.

Today we confirm that we are developing an all-new Rolls-Royce with exceptional presence, elegance and purpose:

  • A car that offers the luxury of a Rolls-Royce in a vehicle that can cross any terrain
  • A car that meets our customers’ highly mobile, contemporary lifestyle expectations
  • A Rolls-Royce that is as much about the pioneering, adventurous spirit of Charles Rolls as it is about Sir Henry Royce’s dedication to engineering and innovation
  • A car that appropriately reflects Rolls-Royce’s brand promise of effortless luxury
  • A high-bodied car, with an all-new aluminium architecture
  • A unique new motor car worthy of carrying the Spirit of Ecstasy into the future

This new Rolls-Royce will be Effortless … Everywhere.

Many discerning customers have urged us to develop this new car – and we have listened. At Rolls-Royce Motor Cars we are uniquely focused on the desires of our customers and are driven by our own thirst to innovate. So we challenged our engineers and design team, led by Director of Design Giles Taylor, to create a different and exceptional new car.

This car will embody all the values and capabilities that drove our two Founding Fathers to secure Rolls-Royce’s reputation, early last century, by taking top honours in rigorous overland adventures such as the Scottish Reliability Trials, the London to Edinburgh event and the Alpine Trials.

Rolls-Royces conveyed pioneers and adventurers like Lawrence of Arabia across the vastness of unexplored deserts and over mountain ranges. In other parts of the world including Australia, India and the Americas, Rolls-Royces carried their owners over challenging terrain with absolute reliability and comfort.

History sets our precedent and our future calls us to action.

This new journey begins now. We will take our time in developing and perfecting this new concept in luxury. We will include our customers, enthusiasts and media along the way and will keep you informed of our progress.

Until then, rest assured, we are creating a motor car in the greatest traditions of our marque.

Sir Henry Royce famously said: “When it does not exist, design it”.

We are doing just that.

Peter Schwarzenbauer, Chairman

Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes, Chief Executive


David Cameron visits Rolls-Royce

This afternoon, Prime Minister David Cameron was presented with a copy of the above letter during a visit to the Rolls-Royce factory here at Goodwood. He toured the Home of Rolls-Royce, meeting with many of the company’s skilled craftsmen and women and learnt about the company’s unique Bespoke hand craftsmanship. The visit concluded with the Prime Minister hosting an open forum with over 800 employees, during which he congratulated the company on five consecutive years of growth and success and the quadrupling of sales and production.



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