An Afternoon Drive In The 2017 Rolls-Royce Dawn
Indulge me (and yourself) just a little this week, as you read my column. I am going to describe the details that intrigued me in the 2017 Rolls-Royce Dawn. Anyone having an extra $400,000 laying around, shouldn’t hesitate to take one of these immaculate driving machines home. Not today? Well, just put it on your bucket list.
Rolls-Royce fans already know about the Wraith. The Dawn is a close sister, but with noticeable differences. The exterior body panels are on the Dawn are 80% new, and the bumper design is different. With the power soft top, the Dawn is elegant and sexy.
I was lucky enough to take the Dawn for a weekend spin with some of the Rolls-Royce folks in Sheridan, Wyoming. Rear-hinged side doors and the triangular taillights were new to me. I was especially delighted to find an umbrella in the side panel when I opened the door. After all, who knows when you might be caught in a sudden rainstorm!
Expect lots of tantalizing surprises on the Dawn, I could have curled up like a baby and slept with the comfortable leather seats in the front and back. Normally, I hate sitting in the back seat but, with the top down in the Dawn, it feels alright.
I like to joke the only competition for the Rolls-Royce Dawn is the yacht you have your eye on or perhaps a Piper plane. According to Rolls-Royce, the Dawn’s real competition comes from: the Bentley Continental GT Convertible, Bentley Falcon or the Aston Martin Vanquish.
Quietest Convertible On The Road
However, in my opinion, Rolls-Royce demands a certain respect that the competition just can’t command. The 2017 Rolls-Royce Dawn is definitely the quietest convertible you will ever ride in! With the top down, there is room enough for four to sit comfortably in the lap of luxury.
If you dare to push the Dawn to 155 miles per hour you will feel the rush of the road. Plus, you can still easily converse with the top down. The 2017 Rolls-Royce Dawn can go from zero to 60 in a little under five seconds – not bad for a vehicle that size. My colleague, Guillaume de Vaudrey, and I actually did that as we passed folks on the isolated roads of Wyoming.
Rolls-Royce Dawn customers have a choice of brilliant colors as they build their own special machine. My favorite was the Mandarin leather interior with a Midnight Sapphire exterior.
There’s a 6.6-liter, twin-turbo V-12 engine under the hood, that produces 563 horsepower and 575 pound feet of torque with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Take note of the dynamic accelerator pedal, which offers the driver as much as 30 percent more response time at medium throttle.
The Dawn’s tires are run flats. If you experience a deflated tire, the car can travel for another 100 miles, at up to 50 miles per hour before a tire change. Without the need for a spare tire and jack, there’s more room for luggage.
For additional safety, the concealed roll-over protection system will deploy from behind the rear head restraints if needed. This mechanism deploys fast with a ratchet system locking the roll-over system into place and surrounding the full windscreen of the vehicle.
The Rolls-Royce Dawn is also equipped with a heads-up display and heat detection system to alert the driver to animal or human heat signatures at night. This provides a warning so the driver can avoid dangers in the dark.
As we were driving through Yellowstone National Park, a rainstorm suddenly hit while we had the top down. No problem, with just the flip of a switch we raised the insulated cloth top without stopping.
The Bespoke audio has been tweaked for the perfect sound in the Dawn. Whether the top is up or down, it’s all good with perfect acoustics. There are 16 speakers with a theater or studio setting for the best sound in the cabin.
This is a four-seat drophead motor car that is perfection all around. The 2017 Rolls-Royce Dawn ushers in a new age for the British luxury auto-maker.