I have been very fortunate to spend my career working with incredible brands in luxury goods, yachting, private aviation and travel and hospitality. One of the most fun and rewarding parts of my job is the different people I meet from different walks of life, most of them self-made who have incredible and fascinating stories.

Many of my clients love cars, as I do, and over the years I have also become something of a brand ambassador for some of the car companies. It gives me a great opportunity to try new cars and share my experiences with my clients. So when Rolls Royce called and asked if I would like to experience the Wraith for a few weeks it was a fantastic opportunity.

The Wraith has a powerful and serene presence, even when it is standing still. The exterior design follows the new generation of Rolls-Royces, from the front the Wraith is similar to the Ghost but it carries the DNA of a fastback with a long overhang over the back wheels that adds to the elegant dimensions and makes the Wraith feel beautifully balanced, particularly so with the large rear-hinged coach doors at the center of the profile. I particularly like the way the fastback sweeps down to the tail, which is really accentuated on the two-tone color schemes. Our car came in the Black Kirsch color which glistened in the light with the metallics and looked spectacular with the chrome trim and the 21 inch painted Alloys with the self-aligning Rolls-Royce logo as the center cap. 

Stepping into the interior of the Wraith, it is everything you would expect of one of the world’s most illustrious automotive marques. The huge electrically operated coach doors sweep open to reveal a world of quiet opulence. The first thing you notice is the Canadel Massacar Ebony on the doors, which is angled at precisely 55 degrees to enhance the visual flow of the interior, framed with sumptuous leather and the RR logo embossed on the headrest. A push of the discreetly placed button below the quarter panel gently closes the door with reassuring thump, and that’s when you appreciate the serenity. The combination of the polished chrome switchgear, piano black Canadel trim extend across the dash. The huge steering wheel is classically Rolls Royce with the large center panel, accented with the chrome, which provides a real feeling of presence. A favorite feature on our car was the optional starlight headliner that uses 1,340 optical lights to stimulate the stars at night, a $4,975 option, which can be further upgraded if you want to have a bespoke constellation. 

Though built and designed as a grand tourer, the Wraith seats four people very comfortably with minimal concession in space due to the fastback design, plenty of legroom and easy access to the backseats through the huge doors. The trunk is also huge with plenty of space for luggage golf clubs and the weekly groceries.

The Wraith is the most powerful Rolls Royce ever built, powered by a 6.6-litre twin- turbocharged V12 that produces 624 bhp and 590 lb-ft of torque. Pushing the start button the sound of the V12 is barely discernible and I found that I needed to check the finely designed instruments and blip the throttle to see the power meter come alive. Gliding away from start, the Wraith is pretty much silent around town and even on the highways as the power meter shows plenty of reserve, the car remains incredibly quiet and you feel cocooned from the outside world with any noise and vibration absorbed through the magic carpet feel of the air-suspension and ample interior leather and wood upholstery. The size and dimensions of the Wraith initially take a bit of getting used to, particularly when navigating the Miami Beach Wholefoods parking lot, but after a few weeks with the Wraith as my daily driver I had quickly adapted.

During my time with the Wraith, I was also invited to join Rolls-Royce for their Power of Perfection event at the Palm Beach International Raceway where I had an opportunity to drive the Wraith on track. Whilst not the usual environment for Rolls Royce, the Wraith performed surprisingly well, the suspension has been developed to minimize body roll and the steering is weighted to be heavier at high speeds. Handling and cornering was solid and surefooted and with the V12 able to propel the 2.4 ton Wraith from 0-60mph in 4.4 seconds it was exceptionally quick. Applying the power, the rear end of the Wraith hunkers down the V12 spools up and the world passes rapidly and serenely by, it is deceivingly fast particularly on the highway. Sweeping through the curves and powering down the straights of Palm Beach Raceway, it also certainly shows that despite the size and luxurious accoutrements of the Wraith that Rolls-Royce is able to make the Wraith an engaging driver’s car.

Driving a series of different Wraiths throughout the day with Rolls-Royce at Palm Beach it was impressive to see just how different all the color and interior design selections were. Through the bespoke design process, Rolls-Royce goes to great lengths to enable and encourage buyers to fully personalize their Rolls-Royce and this is really half the fun of the buying process.

The Wraith I had as a demo had an MSRP of $284,900 as the base car and with all the options, this came to $366,550. Some of the bigger ticket items included the Black Kirsch paint at $9,450, the US Wraith Package at $38,500 with all the driver’s assistance systems and then a series of Bespoke options, which included the Canadel – Macassar Ebony at $12,500. 

The comment made by the North American President of Rolls-Royce when they loaned me the car was that he wanted me to really appreciate that the Wraith for all its opulence is a practical daily driver and after a month with it, the people at Rolls Royce had me completely convinced.

*Photographs and video courtesy of Rolls-Royce and the author.