Just 35 specially designed Phantom Drophead Coupés will be built to celebrate Rolls-Royce’s role in breaking the world waterspeed record 77 years ago.
On September 2, 1937 Sir Malcom Campbell pushed his Rolls-Royce-powered Bluebird K3 hydroplane boat to a hardly believable 129.5mph (208.41km/h) across Lake Maggiore on the Italian-Swiss border and, in doing so, brought the world waterspeed record back to the UK from the US after a five-year absence.
In order to pay homage to this momentous achievement and, of course, to demonstrate to potential clients the sheer depth of bespoking possible when ordering a Rolls-Royce, the company is building 35 very special convertibles.
Badged as the Bespoke Waterspeed Collection, the Phantom Dropheads will each be furnished with brushed steel, a unique Maggiore Blue color scheme and a handcrafted wooden inlay that Rolls-Royce claims will “evoke the sense of a boat effortlessly gliding through water at pace.”
The special edition cars are still in the development stage, but in order to whet potential clients’ appetites, Rolls-Royce on Tuesday published an initial design sketch.
“Sir Malcolm Campbell’s successful pursuit of world-speed records on land and water were the result of his commitment to the most exacting standards of British design and engineering excellence,” said Torsten Müller-Ã–tvÃ¶s, Chief Executive Officer, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars. “Such attributes are hallmarks of every Rolls-Royce motor car, ensuring the marque’s position at the pinnacle of super-luxury manufacturing. This special Collection, and those to follow in 2014, serve to display the breadth of Bespoke personalization available to every Rolls-Royce customer. I very much look forward to revealing these remarkable cars over the coming months.”
As for Sir Malcom Campbell, the British speed fanatic continued to break records. Following his success in 1937, he went back to the drawing board, redesigned his Bluebird, kept the Rolls-Royce engine and broke the record again, hitting 141.74mph (228.11km/h) in 1939 on the eve of the outbreak of the Second World War.