Rolls-Royce Alpine Trial Centenary Collection celebrates century-old Austrian raceTue, 23 Apr 2013
Among the harvest of premieres at the Shanghai Motor Show was a special-edition Rolls-Royce Ghost to celebrate the 1913 Austrian Alpine Trials. Four Rolls-Royce Silver Ghosts entered the race a century ago, and in completing the 1,820-mile challenge flawlessly earned the sobriquet "The Best Car in the World." The new Ghosts commemorating the feat represent two firsts for the brand: Rolls-Royce has never created a bespoke homage to one of its own cars, and it has never released a car with a black grille.
Those two features, as well as blue paint and black wheels, are in tribute to James Radley's privateer entry in that 1913 race that drove alongside the three factory teams. Other special features include the coachline (pinstripe) that evokes the four cars from the 20th-century race, and inside, a color-matched headliner, a clock with the rally stages and times, and topographical inlays on the front fascia and rear picnic tables.
The 20-Ghost Club will be reenacting the event this year, the parade including Radley's 1913 car. It kicks off in Vienna, Austria on June 14. For the time being you can read the press release below and check out the high-res photos above.
ROLLS-ROYCE MOTOR CARS ALPINE TRIAL CENTENARY COLLECTION SET FOR DEBUT AT AUTO CHINA 2013
- Alpine Trial Centenary Collection celebrates landmark moment in Rolls-Royce and automotive history – the establishment of the Silver Ghost as the 'Best Car in the World'
- First ever Bespoke homage to a heritage Rolls-Royce car
- Rolls-Royce Motor Cars announces entry of Works Team into the centenary 20-Ghost Club reenactment of 1913 Alpine Trial
18/04/13 -- A century ago this June, four Rolls-Royce Silver Ghosts embarked on the Austrian Alpine Trials, the most arduous test of automotive endurance of the time.
In performing without fault over 1820 gruelling miles of near impassable mountain terrain, the Rolls-Royce Works Team and privateer entrant James Radley helped cement the marque's reputation for peerless reliability and mechanical excellence, a reputation the company proudly retains today. The Silver Ghosts' performance establishing Rolls-Royce as maker of the 'Best Car in the World'.
At Auto China 2013, the Bespoke department at the Home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood, England celebrates these endeavours with the launch of the Alpine Trial Centenary Collection.
The first time a Bespoke model has taken inspiration from a heritage Rolls-Royce, this limited edition of Rolls-Royce Ghosts features exquisitely crafted design cues that pay tribute to the 1913 Alpine Trials cars. The exterior paint hue, for example takes close inspiration from Radley's Silver Ghost, a car that will participate in this year's reenactment of the 1913 Alpine Trial, as part of the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Works Team.
The Radley car's distinct black grille and wheels are also replicated across the collection – the first time a painted grille has adorned a contemporary Rolls-Royce motor car.
The cabin plays host to Bespoke details that elegantly tell the story of the Alpine Trial. The clock displays the stages of the rally and timings, whilst inlays to rear picnic tables and the front fascia express the topography and distances of the Alpine route. Each element is meticulously hand-crafted and researched to ensure accuracy, epitomising hallmark Rolls-Royce attention to detail.
A hand-painted coachline referencing the four Rolls-Royces that took part in the rally and headlining, colour-matched to the hood of Radley's car, completes a beautiful homage.
"The 1913 Alpine Trial was an extraordinary moment in the rich history of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars," said Torsten Müller-Ötvös, CEO Rolls-Royce Motor Cars."The standards of engineering and pioneer spirit required to achieve such feats stands as inspiration to everyone associated with the marque. The Bespoke Alpine Trial Centenary Collection is a fitting tribute to these achievements. It is testament to the enduring quality of a Rolls-Royce motor car that this 2013 car will be joined by a participant in the original trials, the 1913 Radley Silver Ghost."
An extraordinary story re-enacted...
In celebration of the centenary of the 1913 Alpine Trial, the 20-Ghost Club has organised a faithful re-enactment which will start in Vienna on 14 June 2013.
A Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Works Team comprising a 2013 Alpine Trial Centenary Collection Ghost and Radley 1913 Silver Ghost will participate in the rally.
In total, over 40 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghosts will traverse through Austria, Slovenia, Italy and Croatia – taking in some of Europe's most beautiful scenery, before returning to Vienna on 29 June.
They will converge with a parallel rally organised by the Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts Club for a Gala at the beautiful Riva del Garda, Italy. 100 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghosts will stand side-by-side that evening, representing the largest gathering of its kind in history.
By Jonathon Ramsey
See also: Rolls-Royce Ghost gets in the pink for breast cancer charity, 2014 Rolls-Royce Wraith is everything you need, everything you don't [w/videos], Rolls-Royce Wraith revealed, ready to battle Bentley.