Miriam-Webster defines “bespoke” as “made to fit a particular person,” and nothing could be a more accurate application for the word than the Bespoke program at Rolls-Royce. The folks at Bespoke will make any Rolls model fit a particular person, as defined as a specific individual, who is particular, as in exacting, about what he or she wants.
Rolls-Royce owners do exactly that. It’s not like the typical Rolls dealership has a lot full of dealer stock sitting under strings of bare light bulbs. But Rolls-Royce buyers are offered a number of standard options, including on the Wraith for example, a gold-plated Spirit of Ecstasy mascot for $9,100, or an illuminated Spirit for $7,100, or for the more modest, the uplit Spirit for a mere $3,635.
Further on the Wraith, two-tone paint, recommended by Rolls to accent the fastback roofline, sets a buyer back $7,750. There are, of course, a number of different wood veneers available, up to $12,500 for Paldao, Macassar Ebony or Mimosa Negra.
For some, however, that’s not enough. And that’s where the Bespoke program comes in: If you want it, the Bespoke program will make it happen. Consider for example, says Alex Innes, Bespoke designer for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, the horse racing fan who wanted a record of the jerseys worn by jockeys for different stables. Bespoke created a band of the racing colors about an inch tall across the dash, and not painted but rather pressure treated and inlaid wood, and incredible attention to detail.
Another customer wanted a custom-fitted picnic basket, and Bespoke delivered a basket specifically made to fit the space available, but also had a set of four crystal glasses with extra-thick stems to endure the typical jostling in a car that might break ordinary crystal. Another basket was lined with a customer’s personal tartan.
Other projects for Rolls-Royce Bespoke have included custom thermos bottles, one heated and one cooled, to fit custom holders in the doors. Another customer wanted Rolls-Royce walking sticks, so Bespoke designed a pair with heads that matched the gearshift lever and that fit in custom-made holders in the trunklid.
Innes points out that he’s a car designer, more comfortable drawing things with wheels, so doing other than automobiles is a stretch, but one that he’s willing to make. And that said, he’s done aeronautical-themed cars, drawing inspiration in one case from a famous racing seaplane. And for owners whose cars may cost a third of a million dollars and up, adapting a real aircraft chronometer for use in the car, including matching illumination, is the typical special touch.
Is there anything Rolls-Royce Bespoke won’t do? Flames, perhaps? Innes demurs, saying that customers respect what a Rolls-Royce is, and they haven’t had anything too outré…yet. But us, if we had the money, racing stripes on a Rolls-Royce Wraith? No, not even us.