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Rolls-Royce Dawn review

Rolls-Royce Dawn review

he Rolls-Royce Dawn has all the elements you would want in a soft-top cruiser. Speed, comfort, huge luxury and access to all the blue sky you’d ever want.

Buy a new or used Rolls-Royce Dawn at a price you’ll love
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RRP £297,700 - £337,900
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wowscore
9/10
This score is awarded by our team of
expert reviewers
This score is awarded by our team of expert reviewers
after extensive testing of the car

What's good

  • Supremely comfortable
  • More than enough performance
  • Highest quality finish

What's not so good

  • Hugely expensive
  • Outdated infotainment
  • Boot is tiny given the car’s size

Rolls-Royce Dawn: what would you like to read next?

Is the Rolls-Royce Dawn a good car?

The Rolls-Royce Dawn carries all the characteristics of any other car from the brand – comfort, luxury and power in spades. But with it’s roof being taken off, you might think that it doesn’t end up being as refined and supreme as its siblings.

But what you must always remember about a Rolls-Royce is that it always ensures that the owner – or their chauffeur – is in as much comfort as possible behind the wheel. The Dawn doesn’t disappoint on that promise.

Some may find the looks a bit too showy, with the big grille, huge bonnet and massive wheels being typically Roller. But you could never knock its overall design. As a complete piece it’s magnificent and you’ll find it difficult to find a more elegant posh convertible.

The Black Badge version we tested came with plenty of black detailing, such as on the wheels, the grille and the ‘Spirit of Ecstacy’ – with most of the chrome replaced by black trim. As with any Rolls-Royce though, you can give this any finish you so desire – with near infinite combinations of paint and trim colours on offer.

Inside is where the attention to detail shines. The leather seats are the finest you’ll find in any car, while the materials used for the trims are of the highest quality. There’s enough space for two in the back – unless you go for the aero cowling that is fitted to the back seats to make this even more streamlined. But that would mean driving it yourself, and if you’ve got a driver to take you places, you might not want that.

One less than optimum part about this car though is the infotainment. It’s a rather ancient version of BMW’s iDrive system, and as this car is now six years old, it really shows how far the system has come when you see the tech in new BMWs.

You may not be able to carry as much with you either, as the boot is only 295 litres. That’s the same as a Ford Fiesta. Convertibles aren’t usually the most practical though, and if you have one of these, you’ll probably have staff in another car follow you with your luggage.

As with other modern Rolls-Royces, you get motorised doors to help you get in and out. They have sensors too to stop them hitting obstacles – although that can not work as well on hills which is, again, annoying. You also get the umbrella in the door opening.

The Rolls-Royce Dawn has all the elements you would want in a soft-top cruiser. Speed, comfort, huge luxury and access to all the blue sky you’d ever want.

Mat Watson
Mat Watson
carwow expert

Under the bonnet is a 6.6-litre twin-turbo V12 developing 571hp and 820Nm of torque – more than enough to waft around. That means 0-60mph can be achieved in just 4.8 seconds, while the top speed is limited to 155mph. The Black Badge version we drove comes with slightly more power at 601hp, but on-paper performance stays the same.

The gearbox works in tandem with the sat-nav to provide the optimum gear for junctions and corners, meaning a smoother driving experience and the engine is more responsive.

As you would expect when driving the Dawn, it feels super comfortable and only the largest of bumps are transferred into the cabin. It is quite long at 5.3 metres, so manoeuvring can be a little tricky around town or when making a U-turn.

Out on a country road or motorway, this is truly unmatched for comfort. It feels soft and super easy to drive – and with the roof down on a nice day, there is little to no wind noise. When you do start to push a little harder, you start to feel the Dawn’s 2.4-tonne weight a bit more through the corners – but it’s very rare that you’ll actually drive this like a sports car..

This Rolls (as with any Rolls) doesn’t push you on to drive it like a maniac, and when you want to take a cruise with the roof up, it is basically as quiet as the Wraith coupe on which it’s based.

If the driving luxury wasn’t enough, you get all the equipment you could ever want. Adaptive cruise control, heated and cooled seats, LED headlights, a head-up display and a bespoke sound system (which can drown out the noise of traffic around you) are all fitted, as well as a suite of safety systems.

But how much will you need to turf the cushions over on your sofa to get one of these? Well, the Dawn starts from £282,000 before any options are added, so you’re probably looking well in excess of £300,000, maybe even £400,000 before you get the Rolls-Royce Dawn you want. But for all the luxury and gravitas this car has, you can see why it’s worth that much.

Buy a new or used Rolls-Royce Dawn at a price you’ll love
We take the hassle and haggle out of car buying by finding you great deals from local and national dealers
RRP £297,700 - £337,900
  • Build your perfect car or choose from our recommendations based on your needs
  • Dealers come to you with their best offers
  • Compare offers and buy with confidence