In the race for driverless car entries, luxury car maker Rolls-Royce is in last place, by hundreds of miles, if not light-years.
Its prototype car goes only three miles per hour, currently operated via someone on a cell phone.
The car only has a single door, but the door will roll out a laser projection of a red carpet.
Please be prepared to laugh at Rolls-Royce’s First Driverless Car.
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars on Thursday unveiled its first driverless car, with a “vision vehicle” it hopes will cast a glimpse into the future of luxury transport.
With no steering wheel, a door on one side only and a virtual assistant that can book hotels or advise on your wardrobe selection, the car marks a different direction for a super-luxury marque.
“In 25 years from now, when you see commoditised bubbles as cars, there will be our customers who are used to sitting in something that is luxury,” said Torsten Müller-Ötvös, chief executive of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.
The design, over a year in the making, is a rejection of “utilitarian and bland future modes of mobility”, he added.
The car shown by the company is a working model, capable of a top speed of 3mph and driven by an operator using a mobile phone.
The new car is meant to have zero emissions — although the company admitted it has no idea what will power the vehicle when it enters production in the late 2040s.
“We are currently assuming it will be electric”, Mr Müller-Ötvös said.
The door, which will be on one side only, includes a laser projector that will cast a virtual red carpet on to the floor spreading away from the vehicle to create a “grand arrival”.
Despite having no engine, it will also be the length of a current Rolls-Royce Phantom — just shy of six metres.
Where the 12-cylinder engine once lay will be a luggage compartment, which Rolls-Royce designed after consulting the concierge at London’s Dorchester hotel.
The bags will eject automatically when the car is stopped, leaving at hand height to allow the porter to whisk them away to the waiting suite.
“Most Rolls-Royce customers never touch their luggage”, Mr Müller-Ötvös said.
Those wheel covers will scrape the ground at any speed over 3 MPH on any significant bump.
That beauty will allegedly be ready by the “late 2040s”.
Actually, if it takes that long, Rolls-Royce will no longer be in business. Rolls-Royce ought to be embarrassed by this pathetic effort.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock