African-styled Rolls-Royce Ghost ready to haunt UAE roads
Automotive extravagance has a new, lurid green veneer: a bespoke African-styled Rolls-Royce Ghost, dubbed the “Eco”, could soon haunt roadsides near you.
For Dh1,685,000, Abu Dhabi Motors will shoehorn the entire African continent into a vehicular shell.
“It’s a wild car”, says Kadhim Al Helli, the brand manager of Abu Dhabi Motors, and the car’s creator. “This car will become your baby,” he promises.
“We wanted to build a car inspired by the sheer power of nature.”
It is bedecked in a pleasingly vivid shade called “Fame Green”. The car’s interior is presented in “Crème Light” and “Pine Green”. You are likely to have previously encountered these colours under their pseudonyms, “bright green”, “beige” and “dark green”. Rolls-Royce can build cars in more than 44,000 colours.
The car is inspired by the Bantu, an ethnic group local to Sub-Saharan Africa. Twelve Bantu glyphs are carved into the car’s interior panelling – one for each of the car’s cylinders. These mean “male” and “female”, because “the strongest relationship is between a man and his wife – it makes life continue”. Another Bantu symbol, representing youth, is printed on to the car’s number plate. “It is the symbol of the young,” Mr Al Helli explains, “It is about ... new energy.”
“Everybody is now looking for environmentally friendly stuff,” says Mr Al Helli, although at 13 miles per gallon, the Eco has a serious thirst for fuel. Since it can accelerate from 0-60mph in 4.2 seconds, and with 563 brake horsepower, and a top speed of 250km/h, which enables it quickly to overtake any dainty Toyota Prius or Smart car that strays into your path.
Sadly for prospective buyers, a depositor has already laid claim to the Rolls-Royce Eco. “He owns a group of companies”, says Mr Al Helli. “When he saw this car he couldn’t hold in his emotions. He said, ‘This is the car I should buy.’ He changed his mind 180 degrees.”
Updated: January 8, 2014 04:00 AM