Rolls-Royce Extravaganza

Apart from the longer-term hall display changes, a Rolls-Royce road show took place from April 19-21 in Hall B. Rolls-Royce provided a number of cars for display and combined with the museum’s examples, the range of models ran from FMM’s 1915 Silver Ghost right up to the recently launched all-electric Spectre EV. In addition to the Spectre, R-R SA also had the latest Cullinan, Ghost and Phantom II on view, as well as a client’s Black Badge Wraith. The museum was also used as a push-off point for test drives to Stellenbosch and back.

But one of the brightest highlights of the R-R display was a Phantom VIII Series II. The car was sea-freighted in from Dubai and had been in the country for less than a month. It is part of the driving display tour with three other Rolls-Royce vehicles that included the all-electric Spectre. The Phantom VIII is BIG – 5 762 mm long and 2 018 mm wide and weighs 2 560 kg. It is powered by a 6,75-litre twin-turbo V12 petrol engine that produces 420 kW and 900 N.m of torque. Transmission is an eight-speed automatic. As for Rolls-Royce’s famed silent travel experience, the car is fitted with ‘Silent Seal’ tyres that have a layer of sound-deadening foam inside that helps keep cabin noise levels at below 9 decibels!

In order to fill the rest of Hall B, the Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts Club and other local Rolls Royce collectors generously offered us their vehicles for the three-day event. It was awesome to say the least, with a number of the vehicles having superb provenance. Amongst the exhibition vehicles were a 2015 Limelight, one of 25 made and which was previously owned by King Goodwill Zwelithini, a Hooper-bodied Cloud I previously owned by children’s author Enid Blyton, a 1975 Shadow I that was used to convey the late Queen Elizabeth II on one of her visits to South Africa, and a ‘land yacht’ 1982 Camargue. In all there were 23 Rolls-Royce’s in the static exhibition, with a further three parked in the quadrant to join in on the spectacle on Sunday.

A big thank you to all involved, it was a fantastic exhibition. It was one of the largest R-R exhibitions in the world, albeit for just three days!