Rolls-Royce Wraith review

Category: Coupé

Section: Performance & drive

Available fuel types:petrol
Available colours:
Rolls-Royce Wraith
Add to shortlist
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
  • Rolls-Royce Wraith
RRP from£262,230
Share review

Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

Press the dashboard-mounted starter button and the Wraith’s twin-turbo V12 engine stirs into life so smoothly and quietly you’ll barely notice. It’s a similar story when you pull away, because although the scenery starts to move, you remain wonderfully isolated from any engine noise or vibration.

Gearchanges are utterly seamless, and because the sat-nav system is linked with the transmission, it can read the road ahead to avoid unnecessary shifts and ensure you always stay in the right gear.

However, the Wraith changes character completely when you bury your right foot in the shag pile carpet; the engine bellows loudly and sends you hurtling towards the horizon at a breath-taking rate. In fact, the Wraith is so fast it’ll embarrass a Porsche Cayman in a straight line.

Come to a corner, though, and you’ll quickly realise this 2.4-tonne behemoth is no sports car. When you turn the wheel there’s a lengthy pause before the Wraith’s huge bonnet starts to point in the direction you want it to go, and then the rest of the car reluctantly follows.

Adopt a slow-in, fast-out approach and it’s possible to hustle the Wraith along a country road surprisingly quickly, but the inconsistently weighted steering and mushy brake pedal do put a solid barrier between you and any fun. The slow steering rack comes into its own in town, though, and is light enough to make threading the Wraith's enormous bulk through traffic a relatively painless experience.

This isn’t likely to bother potential suitors that much, because they’re far more likely to use the car to traverse continents on fast, mostly straight roads. With that in mind, though, the Wraith doesn’t ride quite as serenely as you might expect. It’s never uncomfortable, but fidgets around more than we’d like over minor imperfections. That’s a shame, because bigger bumps are smothered remarkably well.

Motorway refinement also leaves a little to be desired, because although the Wraith’s engine remains ghostly quiet at 70mph, its frameless side windows generate an annoying amount of wind noise.

Rolls-Royce Wraith

Also consider

Infiniti Q60

The Infiniti Q60 is a quick and decently refined sporting coup...

McLaren 650S

The 650S is staggeringly fast and handles brilliantly

Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupé

Not the keenest-handling SUV, but the GLC Coupé offers decent...

Polestar 1

Very fast, enjoyable and efficient, but marred by a small boot...