Riding at the back of the Phantom makes one feel like a superstar.
It is one of those memories that has stuck, in all its technicolor glory. A tungsten-colored Silver Spirit Mark I. Racing green coach line. Cream leather seats outlined with navy blue piping. Brilliant chrome and acres of glossy burr walnut trim on the doors and dashboard.
I recall stepping into the back of that Rolls-Royce 31 years ago and being consumed by the entire sensory experience, from the heady scent of the leather from Connolly – a legendary tanner that also supplied the skins for the benches in the British House of Lords – to the pure serenity of the ride, punctuated only by the occasional squeak of the hides rubbing against one another whenever the car went over a bump. And, of course, the raw, childlike excitement of simply being cocooned in one of the most expensive cars of the era.
So, when the communications guy from Rolls-Royce’s Asia-Pacific office offered me the keys to the carmaker’s latest flagship for a road test, I surely had to say yes... but “would you mind terribly if I asked that you do the driving instead”?
After all, this 5.8m-long beast is best enjoyed as a privileged back seat passenger – although ludicrous rumors persist to this day of Phantom owners who actually pilot their limousine.
You can read up to 3 premium stories before you subscribe to Magzter GOLD
Log in, if you are already a subscriber
Get unlimited access to thousands of curated premium stories, newspapers and 5,000+ magazines
READ THE ENTIRE ISSUE