Electric Rolls Royce 102EX driven as it begins world campaign
For the first time since building its experimental electric-powered Phantom, Rolls Royce has relinquished the 102EX's keys to someone from outside of the company. Automobile's Ben Oliver was not only afforded the opportunity to pilot the 2.7 ton hand-built beast of luxurious bliss, he somehow managed to persuade them to let him drive it close to its declared 125-mile range around Lake Geneva.
With the opportunity for spectacular failure hanging in the air like a sweet ripened fruit and a fretting group of engineers in a pursuit vehicle, the journo put the bespoke behemoth through its paces along waters edge, deaf to any pleas to slow down. Oliver wasn't hooning the great Atlantic Chrome-painted whale, keeping to the speed limit and (mostly) pulling away from stops at a measured pace.
The verdict upon bringing the 71 kWh battery over three quarters of the way to empty? Build it. While this electric configuration might offer a hair less power than the usual V12, it also offers a noise and vibration-free ride that fits perfectly with the Rolls Royce luxury image. The company isn't likely to base any production decisions in press reviews alone, preferring to wait on reactions from prospective and existing customers that it plans on having try out this little experiment over the next year. Hit the jump for an RR video discussing the car and plans for it over the coming year.