Rolls-Royce Recruited a Fashion Designer to Build its Most Complex Phantom Ever
Dutch designer Iris van Verpen created the Syntopia.
Rolls-Royce isn’t a company that does things in half-measures. It’s built its reputation making the biggest, best and most opulent cars money can buy, and its latest one-off creation is no different. Called the Phantom Syntopia, the car was created in partnership with Dutch designer Iris van Verpen and has been called the “most technically complex” bespoke Phantom ever made.
To create the Syntopia, Rolls-Royce took a regular Phantom Extended and spent four years adding more of everything. Let’s start on the inside, where Rolls-Royce has really gone overboard with the details.
First up, the headliner of the car looks incredible. We’re used to seeing Rolls-Royce’s star-lined headers, but things have moved up a level in the Syntopia with a bespoke glass sculpture stitched into the lining. The luxury carmaker calls it the Weaving Water Starlight Headliner and claims it’s the most “technically challenging version of this signature Rolls-Royce feature ever produced.”
162 glass petals were attached to the roof lining.
To create the roof lining, Rolls-Royce took a single sheet of leather and made precise symmetrical cuts across its surface to reveal a “liquid metal” texture made from woven nylon underneath. The pattern was then topped with 162 glass petals, which were each applied by members of van Herpen’s couture team who traveled to the company’s Goodwood base to undertake the work.
Once the glass petals were in place, Rolls-Royce went about installing the 995 fiber optic cables that make up the twinkling star lights in the roof liner. On the Syntopia, 187 of those stars line the glass artwork in the roof, illuminating sequentially from the rear and moving to the front to create a feeling of movement.
To make the roof lining alone, Rolls-Royce says the process took nearly 700 hours. In contrast, it takes Ford roughly 22 hours to assemble an entire Ford Mustang.
This roof took longer to make than a Ford Mustang.
But van Herpen and Rolls-Royce didn’t stop there. The water theme continues into the car’s fascia, which incorporates a further 85 petals to mimic the design of the roof.
There are also similar designs across the tables and the passenger panel. In this case, Rolls-Royce was able to achieve a shimmering look by adding tiny glass particles to the lacquer it used. First, the surfaces were covered with a black paint mixed with 0.9 percent glass particles, before a clear coat was added that comprised 1.4 percent of the shimmer.
A similar process was used to paint the exterior of the Phantom Syntopia, which has been finished in an iridescent liquid noir paint that reveals purple, blue, magenta and gold shades in sunlight. There is also a shimmering water pattern painted onto the car’s hood.
The Shiny Show.
To bring everything together, the front seats of Phantom Syntopia are finished in magic grey leather, while the rear seats are upholstered with a specially created silk-blend fabric. The water-inspired patterns continue on the back seats, quilted with a weaving water motif to mirror that on the car’s roof lining.
The whole thing looks insane and even comes with its own bespoke scent, which is said to comprise aromas of cedarwood, iris, leather, rose, and a hint of lemon. Delicious.
The one-of-a-kind Rolls-Royce will be delivered to its new owner in May, and it will also be joined by a bespoke garment designed by van Herpen and featuring further weaving water motifs.
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