It’s a color developed to pay homage to the Bluebird K3, Campbell’s famous Rolls-Royce powered watercraft that on September 2, 1937 hit a top speed of 129.5mph (208.41km) across Lake Maggiore on the Italian-Swiss border. The run set a new world waterspeed record. The Maggiore Blue paint is applied in nine layers and then is sanded back by hand to ensure a perfect surface to receive the finishing lacquered coat. But it doesn’t stop there, as the company’s master coachline painter then spends four hours adding coachlines and Bluebird motifs.
The Phantom Drophead usually comes with a teak decking cover that raises to receive the roof when the top is down, but this has been replaced, for the first time, by brushed steel. However, each panel of this steel is hand beaten into shape, a task that takes 70 hours, then the brushed finish is also achieved by hand, adding a further 10 hours on to the process. Inside, the doors feature hand engraving and there is prodigious use of Abachi wood. Chosen for its special qualities — it’s cool to the touch and has a satin-like finish — it is the first time the material has ever featured in a factory-built Rolls-Royce.
There is also a hand-embroidered panel on the glovebox which lists all of the records Campbell achieved at Lake Maggiore and Coniston Water. The car will be revealed in Chelsea, London in front of an exclusive audience of invited guests on May 13 and will make its first public appearance at the Concorso d’Eleganza at the Villa D’Este classic car show in Italy on May 23.
Air, Earth & Water14.05.2014
Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Waterspeed Collection
The Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupé Waterspeed Collection is a special bespoke series that will only ever run to 35 examples, each of which will be finished in a special ‘Maggiore Blue’.