Following the launch of the BMW Vision Next 100 Concept in March, the BMW Group promised that every company it owns will launch a concept showcasing how the future looks by the end of the year. Today, in a closed ceremony held at the Roundhouse in London we got to meet the next two of the series: the MINI Vision Next 100 Concept and the Rolls-Royce Vision Next 100 Concept.
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While the MINI take on the future of driving involved a cheeky approach to the way humans interact with their cars, Rolls-Royce focused more on luxury, as expected. Even so, the Rolls-Royce brand couldn’t distance itself from what seems inevitable in the future: complete autonomy for cars. In this regard, compared to the BMW brand for example, autonomous vehicles make a lot more sense with the Spirit of Ecstasy on top of the Pantheon grille. Let me explain.
While BMW’s are known for the way they are driven and how they make you feel behind the wheel, driver involvement being key, in a Rolls-Royce the best seat you can have is in the back. Cars made in Goodwood are created specifically to cater to the ultra-rich and their needs and most of the time are driven by chauffeurs. That’s probably why making the autonomous won’t be such a sacrilege, even though some people might lose their jobs.
The interior of the Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 will be a private retreat, a “Grand Sanctuary” in which a virtual assistant, “Eleanor”, not only drives the vehicle but also fulfills the customer’s every wish throughout the journey. The stunning exterior, with an elegant clam shell canopy and coach door, allows passengers simply to stand up and step out of the vehicle, ensuring they are the picture of refinement and taste wherever they arrive. The Rolls-Royce VISION NEXT 100 represents just one possible option for a unique, personal, customized Rolls-Royce.
Picking up on its coach building heritage, the marque has developed the “Personal Vision” which will deliver unique coach built bodies, exquisite hand craftsmanship and the finest materials, all on a zero emissions platform. Innovative production methods and materials will open up new perspectives for customers to create a vehicle to their own specifications: from wheelbase to body shape, they will be able to choose the characteristics and equipment they desire, with the designers at Rolls-Royce creating an individually curated, bespoke masterpiece which is “as unique as the fingerprint of its owner” according to BMW.