Like every other car maker, Rolls-Royce is going electric. By 2030, the firm says it’ll be a fully electric car maker, and is now preparing to launch its first EV. Coming next year, the Spectre is now undergoing an impressive array of tests to put the electric car through its paces.
After running the Spectre EV close to the Arctic Circle to test it in extreme temperatures, Rolls-Royce has now headed to a setting more appropriate for the car’s life on the road: the French riviera.
The move is all part of its aim to cover more than 1.5 million miles to test the car in a variety of settings. In France, the Spectre EV will run on the Autodrome de Miramas facility, which previously held the French Grand Prix way back in 1926. The car will also cover the roads around the Côte d’Azur.
While soaking up the sun, and hopefully a few miles, Rolls-Royce will put the Spectre’s complex suspension through its paces.
In the south of France, the Rolls-Royce Spectre will cover almost 390,000 miles to ensure it delivers the firm’s signature “magic carpet” smooth ride. In order to do this while carrying around the added weight of an EV, Rolls-Royce has developed new hardware and software to control the Spectre’s suspension.
The new system sees the car read the road ahead and, on straights, automatically decouple the car’s anti-roll bars, allowing each wheel to act independently. This, the firm says, will stop the Spectre from rocking whenever it hits an undulation in the road.
Once a corner is spotted in the road ahead, the components are re-coupled, the suspension dampers stiffen and the four-wheel steering system prepares to activate.
According to Rolls-Royce, more than 18 sensors are monitored when cornering, and the car’s built-in computer makes minute adjustments to the steering, braking, power delivery and suspension.
As well as that high-tech suspension system, the Rolls-Royce Spectre also boasts the title of the most aerodynamic Rolls Royce of all time.
The pursuit of ultimate aerodynamics is personified with the redesigned Spirit of Ecstasy mascot on the front of the Spectre. But the reduction of drag on the car goes much deeper than its emblem.
The company’s spaceframe architecture and extensive wind tunnel testing and digital modeling have helped Rolls’ engineers cut the Spectre’s drag coefficient to just 0.25. That doesn’t quite match the 0.20 that Mercedes claims for its EQS sedan, but does put the car on a par with the Honda Insight.
Before all that aerodynamic goodness can head out to customers, Rolls-Royce says it still has a further 600,000 miles of testing to cover with the car. After that, the first customer deliveries of the Spectre will begin in the fourth quarter of 2023.