Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe Waterspeed Collection

13 May, 2014 10:31am Jordan Bishop

Bespoke Phantom-based special edition from Rolls-Royce celebrates Sir Malcolm Campbell’s 1930s water speed records

Rolls-Royce has revealed a Phantom Drophead Coupe-based special edition, created to celebrate the 1930s water speed world records set by Sir Malcolm Campbell.

Previewed earlier this year in a series of sketches, it's called the Waterspeed Collection with a production run of only 35 models. It has been personalised with a range of bespoke styling and engineering features, which pay tribute to the Rolls-Royce R Engine-powered Bluebird boats used in the water-speed record attempts. Given the added exclusivity, the car is now on sale for £435,000 – a hefty £82,000 premium over the already pricey standard car, with all but two having been sold. 

Finished in Maggiore Blue, a reference to the location of Campell’s 1937 record-breaking run, for the first time in a Rolls-Royce the new Phantom sees its Bluebird-inspired paint scheme extend to the engine bay. The electric blue finish has also been incorporated into the car’s unique eleven-spoke alloys for a contrasting effect.

Inside, Rolls-Royce has taken the opportunity to add further Maggiore Blue details, using accents to create a distinctive two-tone steering wheel and dashboard. Windchill Grey leather is used throughout the interior, and borders the brushed steel decking which replaces the tradition teak finish. 

Elsewhere, Abachi wood features inside for the first time in a Rolls-Royce, with the cut of the wood at an angle to “echo the wake left by a boat moving at speed.”

Underlining the water speed connections both inside and out are handcrafted Bluebird motifs, including an engraving on the door armrest and an exterior imprint by Rolls-Royce’s master coachline painter.

On top of this, as with the Aviator Collection unveiled in 2012, the glovebox interior has been used to further emphasise Rolls-Royce’s historical connections – with a hand-embroidered panel detailing the record achieved by Campbell across three years at Lake Maggiore, Lake Hallwil and Coniston Water.

Powering the Waterspeed will be the same 6.75-litre V12 featured in the standard Drophead Coupe, offering 453bhp and 720Nm of torque. This should see it hit 0-62mph in 5.8 seconds, on its way to a top speed of 149mph.

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Err...? Didn't Malcolm Campbell's K3 and K4 boats have Rolls-Royce 'R' engines, whereas these cars have a German-built BMW V12? Can't exactly see what there is to celebrate. Such a shame.

and do the Phantoms take off and flip over backwards killing all occupants as well, when nearing max speed?

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