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After weeks of teasing Rolls-Royce has finally released details of the Wraith - the fastest car ever to wear the Spirit of Ecstasy.
Ordinarily when an ostentatious car such as this is unveiled we immediately think of the Chinese market, but buyers in the Far East are more fond of saloons than they are of coupés so the 'old world' of Europe, America and Russia will be the primary markets for the Rolls-Royce Wraith. The fastback styling may upset some purists but Rolls says it 'conveys a combination of speed, power and agility', strengths that will surely appeal to oligarch buyers.
Swing open the enormous rear-hinged 'suicide' doors and you will find the kind of opulent interior one would expect of Rolls-Royce. Leather trim has been taken from the Phantom while new matt Canadel wood panelling is used throughout. The Starlight headlining, with its 1,340 fibre optic lights, is offered should you be so inclined, the first time it has been offered outside the Phantom.
It would appear that Rolls-Royce was not messing around when it said that the Wraith's power output would be 'more than ample, Sir.' The 6.6-litre twin-turbo V12 engine produces 632hp and a staggering 800Nm of torque. By way of comparison the Ghost 'only' offers 570hp and 780Nm. The result is a 4.4-second 0-62mph time - three tenths faster than the saloon.
To go along with the power Rolls-Royce has also retuned the suspension to make the Wraith more agile, widened the track and shortened the wheelbase to deliver the most driver-focused Rolls-Royce yet. That is not to say the Wraith is an uncultured brute, but Rolls engineers say the new suspension will 'discreetly amplify feedback'.
The Wraith is fitted with the ubiquitous ZF eight-speed automatic gearbox, but it has been paired with a new Satellite Aided Transmission system that uses satellite maps to pre-select the optimum gear for the road ahead and have it ready for you before you knew you needed it!
Paul Healy - 5 Mar 2013
The Rolls-Royce Wraith will arrive in the UK in autumn with prices expected to start from £220,000.