Rolls-Royce’s Director of Design Ian Cameron says “Above all we were determined to make this car a joy to live with and engineered it to give years of effortless service to its owner.” The British design specialist addresses that sentence to one of the most flamboyant cabriolets ever made – the 5.6 meter long Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe.
But even Mr. Cameron can’t deny the fact that no matter how solid the build quality is, no matter how high-quality materials the engineers and designers put in the car, both wood and leather can be altered by the age. Altered in a bad way. Especially when the cabin is directly exposed to UV radiation and the white seats are constanty ‘treated’ by the tones of those comfy dark jeans. This 10-year old Rolls ended in Vilner’s atelier because of those two reasons but not only. The commission: full interior rebuild.
Vilner decided to retain the genuine gentlemen’s club atmosphere inside instead of going radical. Several square meters of extremely fine but durable white leather was used. The central sections of the seats are branded with a double ‘R’ pattern: Charles Rolls and Sir Henry Royce initials are pedantically perforated into the leather. Those tiny holes are serving not only to the aesthetics but also help the heating and ventilating functions of the seats. The ‘RR’ pattern is present on the doors as well. You can also see the ‘piping’ – which is perfectly British – of the seats edges. Pipe line in Cherry color, the same as the new seatbelts and the car’s exterior.
“Cherry was the color of choice for the owner who picked it up from more than 44 000 color combinations that Rolls-Royce offer for the model,” says Vilner. “But when we’re talking about a convertible, choosing the interior scheme is a much more ‘responsible’ task. You can see both the exterior and the inside of the car at the same time”. That’s why Vilner changed the seat belts as well – they’re now in ‘Cherry’ harmony with the mighty exterior.
The whole dashboard is now freshly re-wrapped. Special anti-UV impregnated leather covers the whole structure. The color and the texture are also thought out in terms of minimalizing the reflections on the inside of the windshield. For a complete sense of individual superiority, there are custom floor mats and ‘RR’ embroidery on the headrests.
Every wood panel of this mighty 5,6-metre long V12 convertible has been refurbished. All the parts were taken out of the car, sanded, then covered with 3 layers of lacquer, polished and then polished again. Especially impressive is the ‘rear deck’ under which the soft top folds away. This piece is constructed from Teak wood – Vilner team spent over 120 man-hours restoring that piece alone.
The end result: majestically refreshed Rolls-Royce Drophead Coupe that will continue its effortless service to its owner for long years to come.
2010 Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe, 6,75-litre, 460 hp, 720 Nm, 6-sp. auto, RWD, 2630 kg.