They say it is better to travel than to arrive, and no truer has that been than behind the wheel of one of the world’s most luxurious cars as the Rolls-Royce Wraith came to Oman.
I joined an exclusive test drive event on Tuesday organised by Al Jenaibi International Automobiles held at Al Bustan Palace — A Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Muscat.
The venue was appropriate as climbing into the sleek vision was like checking in to a five-star hotel, the car itself even closes the coach door after you.
But then, with a starting price of OMR140,000 you might expect a level of service from one’s carriage.
The convoy of Wraiths, followed by a Rolls-Royce Ghost, set off from the hotel and wound its way through Qantab, the Al Hajar mountains providing the perfect canvas for the powerful automobiles.
Sitting inside you survey the expanse of fine leather, detailed panelling reminiscent of the 1930s, combined with sleek technology.
One of the freeze-frame moments in time for the driver is watching their hands on the wheel, the bonnet sweeping down ending with the iconic Spirit of Ecstasy on the grille, as Yiti’s coastline, the Gulf of Oman and the blue sky rolls out before them.
For the car enthusiasts the statistics for the Wraith go as follows: a shorter wheelbase, wider rear track, 624 bhp / 465kW derived from the twin turbo V12. It’s 0 to 100 kph in 4.6 seconds may be a little slower than say a Ferrari (1.6 seconds to be precise) but the refined way in which the Wraith reaches the speed is impressive, barely a growl of the engine and you are there.
No flashy noisy roar, just an effortless glide up to cruising speed. The speedometer projected on to the windscreen is a final classy touch.
As Rolls-Royce says: “The consummate gentleman’s gran turismo, Wraith stands as a contemporary homage to the era of effortless spacious coupes and grand tourers. A time where pioneers and adventurers became legends and their masterful machines objects of desire.”
*Al Jenaibi International Automobiles, part of the Suhai lBahwan Group, is the exclusive importer for BMW, MINI and authorised dealers for Rolls-Royce in Oman. Al Jenaibi has achieved huge success since becoming the exclusive importer for the BMW Group in 2004