The Sweptail is the most audacious Rolls-Royce in 70 years

The Sweptail’s unexpected curves explore the boundaries of Rolls-Royce’s famously composed design language.

By Basem Wasef 31/05/2017

Italy’s Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este is legendary for hosting high-profile debuts of world-class concept cars, and this year’s edition proved no exception, as evidenced by the unveiling of the Rolls-Royce Sweptail — a different kind of milestone from the British carmaker.

Boasting a lavishly raked silhouette, imposing visage, and dramatically tapered glass roofline, the audacious one-off is the first factory-built custom coachwork to hail from the marque’s facility in Goodwood, England, in seven decades.

The vehicle, commissioned by a client who happens to reside near Villa d’Este, is the product of four years of intensive collaboration. The Sweptail’s unexpected curves and expansive sheet metal explore the boundaries of Rolls-Royce’s famously composed design language, offering a uniquely sweeping expression of the brand’s DNA.

Following the client’s request for a unique two-seat Rolls-Royce, Director of Design Giles Taylor set out to realise his vision by exploring the client’s personal tastes. The creative dialogue encompassed all aspects of the vehicle’s specifications, from its imposing, twin rounded headlights (which recall the Phantom II of the 1920s and 1930s) to numerous design details inspired by the client’s tastes in classic and contemporary yachts — most notably, the curvature of the stern which offers a hat tip to the nautical world.

Up front, the famous grille — in this case, the largest of any modern Rolls-Royce — has been milled from solid aluminum and hand-polished to a mirror finish.

Inside, great effort was taken to hide buttons and knobs, tucking the controls away in order to create an opulent but minimalist space. By incorporating sweeps of polished Macassar ebony and open-pore Paldao throughout the cabin, the Sweptail takes on an even more sumptuous feel.

The center console, which is surrounded by contrasting Moccasin and Dark Spice leather trim, features a champagne holder and two crystal flutes. The rear seats are replaced with a middle shelf of wood accented with a thin, illuminated glass lip. And tucked behind the coach doors is a pair of panniers holding two custom-made attaché cases that can be released at the push of a button.

In all, the exhaustive process of conceptualisation, design, and execution of the Sweptail project revitalises an age-old automotive art that has the potential to usher in a new era for bespoke Rolls-Royces.

ADVERTISE WITH US

Subscribe to the Newsletter

Stay Connected

You may also like.

This 1-of-9 Mercedes-Benz EV Is Up For Sale

The SLS AMG EV presaged the electric revolution.

By Bryan Hood

30/04/2021

A Hydrogen Powered Hypercar Emerges

Be gone batteries, this lightweight model boasts a potential top speed of 320km/h+.

By Rachel Cormack

30/04/2021

Rolls-Royce x Hermès One-Off Phantom

Two luxury juggernauts reach a perfect union.

By Terry Christodoulou

28/04/2021

An Unrestored ’55 Ferrari Heads To Auction

The untouched example of Ferrari’s 250 Europa GT is more valuable than a restored model.

By Robert Ross

27/04/2021

The Dynamic New Ariel Atom Roadster Arrives

This fourth-generation Atom represents a full re-engineering over previous iterations—and the results are impressive.

By Josh Condon

26/04/2021

Buy the Magazine

Subscribe to Robb Report today!

Subscribe today

Stay Connected