The ultimate status symbol, Rolls-Royce is a car that earned this title in the early 1900s and a century later it still turns heads and subtly announces that ‘sir’ or ‘madame’ has arrived. With a rich history we couldn’t hold off our temptation to entertain our readers with some incredible facts about this evergreen beauty because it truly deserves some limelight! Did you know that Hong Kong features the most number of Rolls Royce and that a mean deed from an Indian king was that he dared use the car for collecting garbage? We bring you more such eccentric tit-bits, stay woven in!
11. Most Rolls Royce products are manufactured at its factory in Indianapolis, USA
The Rolls-Royce has gradually or sporadically shifted its base from London right down to Indianapolis, Indiana. Today, the leading industry supplier in the US builds and supplies more Rolls Royce products than anywhere in the world! A 4000-strong workforce toil towards manufacturing, assembly, test, engineering and other staff support roles. Changing times, changing needs!
10. Rolls Royce was only selling chassis and motor and not the whole body until 1946
We see Rolls-Royce as a homogenous brand, but did you know that up until 1946, they only sold the chassis and motor with a recommendation to use Barker & Co Ltd to build a customized body and coach? They weren’t really selling cars with the complete body work. As for Barker & Co, they were a big shot coach building company footed in London. One of their designs – The Silver Ghost is now the most valuable car in the world, weighing in at US$57 million.
9. Rolls Royce center caps do not rotate
Call it one of the anomalies or idiosyncrasies, the Rolls Royce center caps do not rotate. They’re on bearings and always stay put so they can always be seen. I don’t know about you, but I’d call it pure style.
8. The iconic Spirit of Ecstasy on the hood cannot be flicked
The front of the Rolls Royce starring the Spirit of Ecstasy – a hood unique to a Rolls Royce was prone to being flicked off its front in the early days. With the new variants, this booty hack is not quite a possibility – Thanks to the safety feature that allows the mascot to retract swiftly into the body of the car when inflicted with force. In case you wondered about the etymology of the term, it symbolizes the forbidden love affair of John Walter, editor for The Car Illustrated magazine, and his secretary, Eleanor Velasco Thorton. Sultry and saucy!
7. Only one man is entitled to paint the coach line of the Rolls Royce
We’re not alien to the fact that Rolls Royce cars display a penchant for detailing in every nook and corner. You can faithfully announce it as the epitome of meticulousness and exclusivity when you know that the coach line is painted freehand by one man only – Mark Court. No robots or machines used, mind you!
6. There are more Rolls Royce’s in Hong Kong than anywhere else in the world
Hong Kong having the most number of Rolls Royce cars per capita in the world is shaped from a factor of history. It was a British colony in the early decades and most of the British officers as well as businessmen had a Rolls Royce of their own because it was considered the ultimate status symbol. Colonization definitely had their merits for Rolls Royce, so to speak.
5. Rolls Royce has a special training program for chauffeurs
A premium car calls for a premium driving experience. The folks at Rolls Royce empathise with this fact and they’ve come up with an apt training to hone the skills of the chauffeurs for the premium cars – The Rolls Royce White Glove experience. Some of the etiquettes taught in the program include never greeting a guest with sunglasses on and never propping up the sunglasses on the head or the back of the neck when the guest is around. This and many more such etiquettes that chauffeurs tend to neglect. Keep the manners intact and be worthy of a handsome tip!
4. Rolls Royce only uses bull skin for its upholstery
Connoisseurs of pristine upholstery, would rave about the fact that Rolls Royce only uses bull hides for upholstery since female cattle are prone to getting stretch marks during pregnancy. That’s just a glimpse of the impeccable detailing. Also, it takes 8 bulls to upholster a single Rolls Royce, that’s quite a number! Moreover, the bulls whose skin they use for the upholstery are raised in the region of Europe where the climate is too cold for mosquitoes to live – so you get blemish-free and cottony-soft seats to lay on!
3. An outraged Indian king used Rolls Royce cars as a garbage collectors
The majestic vehicle has also suffered the fate of a garbage collector! When Jai Singh, a Maharaja of a princely state of India was faced by an uncourteous salesman at the Rolls Royce showroom in London who suggested that he could not afford to purchase the car, he purchased ten, shipped them to India and ordered to use them for collecting and transporting garbage! Many would refute that he still made the company some big bucks, but back in the day, the presumption that honour was more important than money, could have acted like a hit below the belt. Other royalty who treated the car like trash or for trash, you ask? It would be the Nizam of Hyderabad and Maharaja Bhupinder Singh, both with their own outrage at the insults from the British.
2. The grille was etched with the initials of the craftsman who made the car
Another fact to wonder about is that the Rolls Royce grille of the early cars were built completely by hand and lined up by eye by a craftsman who would inscribe his initials on it. This fact has less to do with consistency and more to do with damage handling. If the grille went bad, the initials would help them track the man down in England who made it and ship it for repairs.
1. 65% of all the Rolls Royce cars ever built are still on the road
What would you term as optimal utilization of resources? The most mind-boggling fact is that 65% of all Rolls Royce cars ever built are still on the road today – customized, bejewelled, or pimped up! Many fans seem to attribute this to the powerful engine and the meticulous craftsmanship keeps the car going on and on.
Source: LUXURY LAUNCHES