All-electric Spectre helps Rolls-Royce Motor Cars to ‘record year’ | Business News

The 119-year old marque, which never gives much away in terms of figures, says its ambition to build only fully electric cars by the end of 2030 is on track.

By James Sillars, Business reporter @SkyNewsBiz

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has reported another year of record sales, bolstered by a recovery in China and the launch of its new all-electric Spectre model.

The Goodwood-based firm, which is owned by BMW, said 6,032 vehicles were delivered to customers in 2023 – a slight uptick on the previous 12 months.

The performance was driven, the company said, by demand for its existing Cullinan, Ghost and Phantom marques, with buyers all securing a degree of individuality for their cars under its growing Bespoke programme.

A burgeoning Coachbuild operation also allows for the customer to be involved in every stage of the design and production process.

The highest number of sales were achieved in North America, with Greater China following after a tough 2022 amid a lag in the lifting of COVID pandemic restrictions in the world’s second-largest economy.

The UK remained the firm’s largest European market.

Rolls-Royce ceased production of Wraith and Dawn models in 2023 in favour of its new Spectre model.

The company’s first all-electric cars were shipped in the autumn, it said, without giving any figures.

The Spectre is the company’s first all-electric vehicle. Pic: R-RMC

The milestone marked the start of a shift that will see Rolls produce only fully electric cars by the end of 2030.

It hired an additional 180 staff last year and is planning to expand its Goodwood operations to help achieve this ambition.

The firm’s fortunes contrast sharply with the wider motor vehicle sector as customers of Rolls are largely high net worth individuals unlikely to be affected by cost of living and other pressures such as hikes to borrowing costs that have impacted demand at the high volume manufacturers.

Figures released by the Society for Motor Manufacturers (SMMT) on Friday showed that while the number of new cars registered in the UK grew by around 18% last year, the boost came from businesses investing in large fleets.

Growth in private registrations was flat.

Chief executive of Rolls, Chris Brownridge, succeeded Torsten Müller-Ötvös following his retirement at the end of November last year.

He said of the company’s performance: “2023 was another extraordinary year for Rolls-Royce, with strong sales performances in all regions and across the full product portfolio.

“It’s especially encouraging to see the enormous interest in and demand for Spectre, supporting the decision to adopt a bold, ‘all-electric’ strategy for future model development and production.

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“The record level of Bespoke commissions, both by volume and value, also underlines our position within the luxury sector, offering our clients opportunities for self-expression and personalisation they cannot find anywhere else.”

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He added: “As incoming CEO, I’m in the extremely fortunate position of taking over responsibility for a business in robust good health, with strong foundations and a clear strategy for growth and development, formidable technical capabilities and a focused, dedicated team.

“I’m looking forward to working with the entire Rolls-Royce team to maintain this momentum and take this great company forward with confidence and conviction.”


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