A review of The Rolls Royce Dawn by Adam Tudor-Lane

Posted 29th December 2016

Never have I been sat in a parked car and a total strange has called me Sir, other things maybe…but not Sir, and never the phrase ‘That’s a very nice car Sir!’. I could only be sitting in Rolls-Royces latest motor car, the Dawn.

Starting at £220,000 (without local taxes), it currently sits at the entry point for RR ownership, with the Wraith a mere £7,000 more. This Dawn came in at a £268,130 with options – mind you a Riva Iseo speedboat comes in at around £230k, so it’s not bad for the equivalent road going companion.

Rolls claim the Dawn to be the sexiest Rolls-Royce ever built. They wanted a car that looked as good with the roof up, as when the roof was down. Building two cars in one.

Side on, with the roof up it looks low and poised, ready to pounce on the tarmac ahead of it. But the real party trick is when the top comes off, it goes from a hunkered down slingshot into an open-air theatre, this all happens in 22 seconds, at a speed of up to 34 MPH, in complete silence.

And that’s how the Dawn looks most impressive, with its glorious book matched veneer on show to the world.
This Dawn had a lovely white leather interior, matched with a dark blue leather dashboard and hints of tangerine orange. At first you question the choice, but a drophead Rolls needs to garner attention, this combination does it like no other.

The open pore Paldao wood looked gorgeous, coming from Southeast Asia they can grow to 10 feet high, with a single log able to produce 2,000 to 20,000 feet of board. Set against the Arctic White leather it looked incredible.

With it being a Rolls-Royce you expect it to glide effortlessly over its terrain, which it does without a doubt. Occasionally you will hear a very muted thud if you hit something particularly bad, but overall whether the roof is up or down you travel in near silence.

The only time that tranquillity is broken is under a heavy right foot, then within a second or so the revs rise, and the 6.6 litre V12 up front lets out a muted roar before dumping a huge great sticky glob of power to the road below you.

But it all stays very well restrained, even though you have 563 BHP and 780 Nm of torque at your disposal, it will manage to put that power down without drama under pretty much any circumstance, rain or shine.

Rolls say that the car term 2+2 doesn’t equal 4, and they are correct. Many 2+2’s are fitted with rear seats for people with fold up legs, they are just ridiculous. Not so in the Dawn. You can easily seat 4 adults in sumptuous levels of comfort, this truly is a 2+2.

Rolls-Royce have been lacking a baby convertible for a good few years now, the Phantom Drophead Coupe was the only option before the Dawn came along. The Phantom is in its twilight years though, and the design language of Rolls has moved on to become more sculpted compared to its 2007 debut.

Starting at £220.000 it’s a lot of car, and status for the money, but it is two cars in one.

A quiet long legged GT coupe for two, and a top down summer cruiser for the French Riviera.

It’s worth every penny.

Facts at a glance:

  • Top Speed: 155 MPH
  • Power: 563 BHP
  • 0-60 MPH: 4.9 seconds
  • Economy: 13.2 MPG Urban