Rolls-Royce is busy preparing some important new models, including its first-ever SUV and a new version of its flagship Phantom. But unlike the current model, the upcoming eighth-generation Phantom will only be offered as a four-door sedan, the carmaker says.
So like ocean liners coming into port after one last Transatlantic trip, the Phantom Drophead Coupe convertible and Coupe are about to be mothballed. The last examples of each model will be built in November, and they will not be replaced when the new Phantom appears. Rolls is planning a special Zenith limited edition to send these models off.
Only 50 Phantom Zenith coupes and convertibles will be made. Rolls promises the “sum of all the best features” of the Phantom Coupe and Drophead Coupe, and will include model-specific touches like a “Tailgate Hosting Area,” special instruments, and a new version of Rolls’ “Spirit of Ecstasy” hood ornament. Inside are laser-etched armrests depicting Villa d’Este and Geneva, where Rolls originally unveiled the 100EX and 101EX concepts that became the Drophead Coupe and Coupe, respectively.
Unless rival Bentley decides to go ahead with its long-rumored Mulsanne convertible, the departure of the Rolls Phantom coupe and convertible marks the end of ultra-high-end British luxury two-doors. Cars this size that can just barely seat four people never really made much sense, but that was beside the point. Rolls will continue to make the Wraith coupe and Dawn convertible, both of which are based on the smaller Ghost sedan.
Whether in coupe, convertible, or sedan form, the current-generation Phantom has had an impressive career. It was the first Rolls model to be built under the aegis of BMW, which used its technical and financial resources to restore the iconic British brand to relevance. The sedan appear in 2003, and has been seen wherever rich people congregate ever since. The convertible arrived in 2007, followed by the coupe in 2008.
Considering the design is over a decade old now, it’s about time Rolls brought out a new Phantom. However, that car’s arrival may be overshadowed by the launch of Rolls’ first SUV. Called the Cullinan, it’s currently under development, but there is no set date for its launch.