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Mike Stevens | Sep 23, 2009

IT SEEMS THERE'S very few carmakers left that haven't either unveiled an all-electric car, or announced plans to reveal one in the near future. From Subaru's Plug-in Stella to BMW's Project i, the electric car has become the new go-to future technology.

If reports making their way out of the Goodwood Revival event in the UK this week are anything to go by, Rolls-Royce is considering joining the fraternity with an all-electric version of the Phantom.

Speaking with press at the event, an unidentified Rolls-Royce staffer apparently let slip that an electric Phantom is under consideration at the British luxury carmaker, pointing out that the extra weight of a lithium-ion battery pack would be a minor concern in the three tonne V12-powered flagship.

The reports follow comments last year from CEO Tom Purves who, after driving the new electric MINI, told UK magazine car that an electric powerplant would be perfect for Rolls-Royce.

"We stand for unmatched refinement and you can’t get a quieter and less intrusive engine than a well-engineered electric motor. Truly, the loudest noise you would hear would be the tick of the clock," Purves told car in October.

"We also stand for strong and instant torque – and an electric motor delivers maximum torque instantly. The 'waftability' would be fantastic."

rolls-royce-phantom_engine

Purves envisions a future where, with even the existing driving range of most electric cars more than up to the task, conventional internal-combustion cars could be banned entirely from urban areas.

With that possible future in mind, Rolls-Royce would do well to ensure it's in a position to continue serving ministers and well-heeled private citizens in need of comfortable city-centre transport.

An all-electric Phantom, or Ghost, would seem just the ticket.

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