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Meet the Rolls-Royce Droptail, Probably the World’s Most Expensive New Car

Reportedly costing more than $25 million, this is the first of four coachbuilt Droptails to be made.
Rolls-Royce

This may come as a shock, but I’m not the intended clientele for what is likely the world’s most expensive new car. I’m not an oil baron, nor was I born into any wealth, nor do I control an entire country’s water supply. So perhaps my plebeian eyes aren’t up to the task of judging an eight-figure automobile, but I’m not quite sure I expected it to look like this—the Rolls-Royce Droptail.

Rolls-Royce just revealed the Droptail to the world during Monterey Car Week, in all likelihood shattering its own record for the world’s priciest new car. That distinction was previously held by the Rolls-Royce Boat Tail, which debuted at last year’s Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este. Rolls never reported the Boat Tail’s official cost, as it was a bespoke project and only three coachbuilt cars were created to exact customer specifications. (Some of those customers reportedly included Jay-Z and Beyonce.) At the time, the Boat Tail was said to command $28 million. While Rolls hasn’t officially revealed the new Droptail’s cost either, Autocar reports it is even more expensive than the Boat Tail.

The Drive reached out to Rolls-Royce for pricing confirmation and will update this story as we get more info.

Like the Boat Tail before it, the new Droptail is a coachbuilt design that shares very little with any other Rolls-Royce product. Only four will be made, with each one suitably bespoke for its client. The gist of the design was a collaboration between Rolls and the four customers, but each will be customized to the owner’s preference.

It’s an admittedly beautiful car, but is it $30 million-beautiful? The long hood, custom rear deck, and low-slung shoulder line all pay homage to roadsters of the 1920s, according to the automaker. The crimson example you see here—the first of the four to be made—is dubbed “La Rose Noire.” That translates to “black rose,” and, appropriately, its red-and-black color scheme was said to be inspired by the Black Baccara flower.

The Droptail’s cabin will be familiar to anyone who’s seen a modern Rolls, but it does have some unique touches. The center armrest is new, and the dashboard trim is covered in a red/black geometric pattern that reminds me of Casino Royale’s opening credits. That same motif covers the entire rear deck of the Droptail, too. And because no uber-expensive car is complete without a custom watch, the Droptail comes with a bespoke Audemars Piguet that fits into the dashboard, serving as the car’s clock. Rolls even had to crash test the design to ensure the watch didn’t become a projectile in the event of an accident.

Despite its two-door shape, the Droptail isn’t based on the new electric Rolls-Royce Spectre. Instead, La Rose Noire packs a familiar 6.75-liter twin-turbo V12 that develops 593 horsepower, 30 more than the Phantom. However, torque is rated at 620 lb-ft, which is 44 lb-ft fewer than the Phantom.

The Rolls-Royce Droptail is an impressive statement, one made almost entirely by hand and certainly unlike anything else on the road. You could argue it isn’t worth $30 million or more, especially considering the gorgeous vintage metal it was competing for attention with at Pebble Beach. Yet in the world of the uber-rich, where everyone has everything, exclusivity is king. So being one of only four people in the world to own this very pretty Rolls is what makes the Droptail so valuable. If nothing else, it’s probably at least more deserving of its price tag than those charred remains of what used to be a Ferrari.

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