Rolls-Royce Unveils Self-Driving Prototype With Luxurious Interiors

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars displays its self-driving prototype at headquarters in Westhampnett, U.K. Photography courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


What if cars could be like living rooms? That’s the tantalizing prospect offered by Rolls-Royce Motor Cars’s self-driving prototype, Vision Next 100. With the driver’s seat no longer necessary, replaced by an OLED virtual-chauffeur screen, the coupe’s interior can open up to become a lounge complete with silk-upholstered seating, deep-pile ivory-colored wool carpet, and handcrafted macassar ebony paneling. “I enjoy interiors with as little visual noise as possible. Then it comes down to materials and textures, enhancing them through lighting,” director of design Giles Taylor says. “It’s a modernist discipline that goes back to Frank Lloyd Wright.”



Macassar ebony paneling and silk upholstery. Photography courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


Passengers can stand at full height to enter and exit, thanks to a tempered-glass top that swings up. The rest of the lithe 20-foot-long body—inspired by Roman chariots and royal carriages—is carbon fiber. But devotees of the illustrious British automaker need not worry: Its signature winged hood ornament and polished chrome grille remain.


Watch a video to see the prototype in motion:




An OLED virtual-chauffeur screen replaces the drivers seat. Photography courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


Automatically opened by infrared sensors at departure and arrival, a luggage compartment with a pair of suitcases in leather and carbon fiber designed to fit. Photography courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


The initial sketch in ink on paper. Image courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


A rendering of the car's interior. Image courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


The seating will be silk-upholstered. Image courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


Color and material designers Cherica Haye and Barbara Romberg. Photography courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


Wool carpet. Photography courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


The Vision Next 100 prototype. Photography courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.


The Vision Next 100 prototype. Photography courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.

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