Rolls-Royce Boat Tail brings back coachbuilding

Rolls-Royce is returning to its coachbuilding roots, and the new Boat Tail is the first product of the company's new Coachbuild division.

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Derek Fung
Derek Fung
Journalist
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If one has ever wondered how much a custom-made road-legal luxury cruiser designed for one’s specific interests costs, the answer seems to be around $36 million.

Inspired by yachts and with an eye-watering price that’s more nautical in nature, the Rolls-Royce Boat Tail is the first custom-designed limited-run model from the company’s new Coachbuild department.

Just three Boat Tail cars will be built, each for a different client. While the vehicles share the same body design, they will be heavily customised to suit each owner.

Although the Boat Tail is 5.8 metres long, the car’s design is dominated by its long bonnet and stretched out tail. As such, interior room doesn’t look spectacular – especially for anyone sitting in the two rear seats.

Instead of a traditional boot, the Boat Tail has two wood panels hinged in the middle and which flip up from the side.

In a nod to its nautical inspiration, these panels are finished in Caleidolegno veneer and have brushed stainless steel pinstripe inlays.

Built into the boot are fold out champagne tables and a pop-out parasol.

The car also includes two fold-up stools custom made by Promemoria, and a double refrigerator including cradles for specific bottles of wine.

In order to ensure that “food, liquids and of course champagne” stored in the boot are still fresh upon arrival, the boot includes two fans to help dissipate heat.

For weather protection the Boat Tail comes with a temporary tonneau cover, as well as manually-fitted fixed canopy roof with a flying buttress-style design.

Inside the cabin, the Boat Tail’s dashboard seems a little closer to regular Rolls-Royce models, but it does feature a Bovet 1822 clock and dials decorated with Guilloché trim.

In a prepared statement Torsten Müller-Ötvös, Rolls-Royce CEO, described the Boat Tail as “four-year collaboration with three of our most special clients” rather than a “concept created to be retrospectively sold”.

It’s not known how much each of the three Boat Tails cost, but according to Autocar the price tag may be as high as £20 million ($36 million). At the very least it’s thought exceed the custom-built £10 million ($18 million) 2017 Sweptail.

Müller-Ötvös said the luxury automaker was making coachbuilding “a permanent fixture within our future portfolio”.

The new Rolls-Royce Coachbuild department is “return to the very roots of our brand”, and will see the company work with its “closest clients” to create “ambitious, personal statements of true luxury”.

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Derek Fung
Derek Fung
Derek Fung is a Journalist at CarExpert.
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