Friends, take a good look at this 2023 Rolls-Royce Black Badge Wraith Black Arrow. You may never see it again, because only 12 are planned for production and each one is already spoken for. Moreover, this is the last new V12 coupe from Rolls-Royce, as all future models will be electric only. We are indeed looking at the end of a very long era.
What does an affluent buyer get with this special vehicle, aside from a name nearly as long as its production run? It’s impossible to miss the gradient exterior finish, transitioning from silver in front to black at the rear and highlighted with yellow trim. Specifically, the colors are Celebration Silver and Black Diamond, with a glass-infused topcoat then applied to the black portions for added effect. The colors and application techniques were refined over 18 months, making this one of the most complex paints ever created by Rolls-Royce.
The colors aren’t random, either. The Black Arrow takes inspiration from the automaker’s Thunderbolt land-speed record car from the 1930s, which wielded not one, but two V12 engines to set a record of 357.497 mph at Bonneville. Its polished aluminum body made it difficult to see on the salt flats, so a big black arrow with a yellow circle was painted on the side. As such, you’ll find yellow in the Black Arrow’s bumper inserts, on the wheels, on V-braces behind the grille, and a subtle yellow circle beneath the iconic Spirt of Ecstacy hood ornament.
Move inside and you’ll see considerably more yellow. It covers the front seats, the steering wheel, and serves as trim on the dash and doors. The special clock on the dash features yellow trim, along with the Thunderbolt’s record-setting speed from 1938. Yellow trim is also found on the rear seats, and a yellow dot within an arrow is seen on the special door sills identifying the car as one of 12 Wraith Black Arrow models.
Beyond that, the Wraith’s interior is made of a new type of material called Club Leather. That goes for the yellow and black surfaces, and of course there’s a star headliner above it all. Not only that, the 2,117 fiber-optic lights are arranged in a pattern that represents the night sky over Bonneville for Thunderbolt’s record-setting run in 1938. Look closely at the steering wheel and you’ll see a black mesh pattern at the top of the rim when straight, mimicking markings painted on the salt flats for the record-setting run.
And while the engine is unchanged at 624 horsepower and 642 pound-feet of torque from the Black Badge Wraith, it gets a special yellow-trimmed badge identifying it as the final V12.
“Wraith is one of the most significant and influential cars we have ever made at Goodwood,”: said Rolls-Royce CEO Torsten Muller-Otvos. “Its extraordinary power, performance, and presence opened the Rolls-Royce brand to an entirely new group of clients. It created its own following within contemporary culture and then expanded that further in its alternative Black Badge guise. As the last examples of this landmark motor car get ready to leave Goodwood, we commemorate Wraith’s status as the last series V12 coupe we will ever make.”