Rolls-Royce Dawn Drophead unveiled

Rolls-Royce has revealed detail and images of the all new Dawn. Beautiful, isn’t it?

The new convertible, or ‘Drophead’ as the British marque prefers to call it, is based upon the Wraith Coupe, but Rolls-Royce is keen to stress the differences. On the outside, 80 per cent of the exterior panels are different from the Coupe, with the Dawn introducing a new contemporary design flourishes to evolve the current lineup’s design language.

The front end is defined by full LED adaptive headlights, which detect approaching traffic and aim the beams in a way as to not dazzle other road users. They sit either side of a grille which is more recessed than on the Wraith, and a bumper which sits out more prominently. Alloy wheels measure 20 or 21 inches in diameter according to Sir or Madame’s tastes

Rolls has gone to great lengths to make sure the Dawn looks as elegant with the roof up as it does down. Contrary to many convertible cars with metal folding roofs, Rolls-Royce has persisted with a fabric hood for reasons of “aesthetics, romance and brand appropriateness”. The process of opening and closing the roof takes 22 seconds, and is said to be performed in silence.

It isn’t just the roof which is quiet, either. Hood up, the Dawn is claimed to be the quietest convertible in the world, to the point that it is as quiet as the metal-roofed Wraith.

Swing open the rear-hinged coach doors to reveal a cabin with four full seats – many convertibles have smaller, more cramped seats in the rear. Rolls-Royce is keen to stress its use of four proper seats because it believes that a convertible with cramped rear seats is antisocial – and being antisocial is “anathema” (their big word, not our own) to Rolls Royce’s values. Passengers in the rear don’t get out – they disembark, apparently.

The interior, as one would expect, is stunning. It can be trimmed in almost any colour and material the customer desires, be it wood, leather, or anything else you can think of. The 16-speaker audio system has been optimised for both open- and closed-top driving, while microphones detect outside noises, and compensate for the sound of the riff-raff accordingly. While traditional dials sit ahead of the driver, a 10.25-inch high-definition screen displays all of the infotainment graphics.

The “magic carpet” ride typical of any Rolls-Royce is said to remain, while strengthening of the chassis to compensate for the lack of a solid roof is said to make the Dawn the most rigid four-seater convertible on sale today. Smooth driving is assured thanks to an automatic gearbox that consults the satellite navigation to read the road ahead and select the most appropriate of the eight gears.

That gearbox is matched to a twin-turbo 6.6-litre V12. It seems vulgar to talk about performance figures for a Rolls-Royce but if you must know, the engine produces 563hp and 575lb ft of torque. That is enough to march this 2,560kg convertible briskly yet gracefully to a 0-62mph time of 4.9 seconds.

Rolls Royce dawn prices

Unfortunately, if you have to ask…

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