Listen. We love concept cars, but this thing is out there. Even for us. Upon first glance, we weren’t sure how anyone would theoretically drive this thing. “Is it autonomous, or do you just roll it down a hill like a pinewood-derby car?” we wondered. That was before we realized there was an empty, open-air seat up front for the driver.
It’s called the Rolls-Royce Apparition, and it was created by design student Jeremy Westerlund while studying at the ArtCenter College of Design in Los Angeles, California. This is not an official Rolls-Royce concept, nor is it (as far as we know) ever heading for production.
The design is a modern take on chauffeur-style vehicles the early 1900s. Back when your grandpa’s grandpa was in his prime, chauffeurs would pilot motorcars from the outside, leaving passengers to carry-on merrily in (or on top of) the bonnet. This was stylish and appropriate for a time, but we wouldn’t advise it on highways of the 21st century. Westerlund captures many of the classic Rolls-Royce design elements, but the overall concept doesn’t make much sense.
The Apparition is both intriguing and repulsive. Measuring over 23 feet in length, this villainous boat hull stretches four feet longer than a Rolls-Royce Phantom. Considering most Rolls-Royces are about the length of a small water craft, this isn’t that outrageous. What we can’t accept is the driver being outside the vehicle – Ever heard of rocks?
But that’s just one problem. What if you needed to alert the driver of a change in destination, or if there was an emergency situation in the cabin? The Apparition is as forward-thinking as it is devoid of any thought at all. We see Westerlund’s inspiration, but we’re glad there’s no plan for production. We’ll happily keep our chauffeurs inside the car, where they won’t have to wear goggles or dodge flying objects.
What do you think about the Apparition? One of the things we find most interesting about cars and style is how subjective taste can be. Leave a comment on our Facebook or Twitter letting us know, and make sure to keep up with the blog for all the latest Rolls-Royce news and upcoming events.