Rumor: Rolls Royce working on a hybrid or electric model for 2012 London Olympics

Rolls Royce | January 15th, 2011 by 3

The 2012 London Olympic Games are nearly a year away and automakers are beginning to ramp up their marketing leading to the world class event. …

The 2012 London Olympic Games are nearly a year away and automakers are beginning to ramp up their marketing leading to the world class event. Next year, the London Olympics will also be govern by sustainability and technology advancements coming from automakers around the world. BMW has already announced the launch of the Megacity vehicle around the kick-off date of the Olympics and an impressive fleet of EfficientDynamics vehicle will be at the disposal of officials and not only.

Rolls Royce, the luxury automaker, is also joining the “eco-friendly” movement and according to UK newspaper DailyMail, the Goodwood-based carmaker is working on a hybrid or electric vehicles for the 2012 London Olympic Games.

Speculations around a “green” rolls have been going around for quite some time now and the highly successful Ghost model is the main driver behind this. The company sells about three Ghosts to every one Phantom.

The newspaper quotes Rolls Royce CEO Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes who said “an electric or alternatively-fuelled ‘experimental’ Rolls-Royce model would be a good idea”.

In a follow-up conversation, Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes confirmed ‘all options’ for alternatively-fuelled vehicles were being considered.

The company’s flagship $500,000 Phantoms currently manage just 15 miles to the gallon.

With the world’s eyes watching the 2012 Olympics – where parent company BMW will be showing off their low-emissions cars to ferry 80,000 VIPs to and from venues – it could be the perfect opportunity to showcase just such a vehicle running on electric power, or even a fuel-cell.

Mr Mueller-Oetvoes said: ‘We are not going to make any rash decisions. It would be wrong for the brand and wrong for our customers if we were to take a decision without fully exploring all options.’

Could this be just an “on-off” model? We will find out soon enough…

  • Bryce

    I understand that right now the words “efficiency” and “luxury” aren’t often used in the same sentence, but I think that Rolls could really utilize the advantages of electric or hybrid vehicles. Luxury auto makers spend loads of money making the cabins of the vehicles as quiet as possible, but even they are no match for the silence of an electric powered vehicle. There’s something remarkably luxurious about being silently whisked away.

  • Efoza

    I really fear for the environment given the sudden rush to make eletric cars. What happened to BMW’s vision of making cars which will be environmentally friendly (hydrogen powered cars). I was in London last week and was told by the hotel that BMW, Benz and Audi were all paying deposits for car park spaces with recharging facilities. God help us and the environment. I see dark days ahead.

  • X5SoB

    I was thinking in somewhat the same direction on this as Efoza, but for different reasoning. BMW invested all that money in hydrogen powered V12 engines, but it proved to be a poor fit with the 7 series. With Rolls Royce, however, this would work much better, being eco-friendly while still having a big, powerful V12 under the hood. Also, the weight penalty of the high pressure tanks would be less of a concern for Rolls. It would also give Rolls a distinctly different “green” direction, leaving hybrids and electrics for BMW and MINI to explore.