Car News: Oversteer
The Rolls-Royce Dawn Is a Truly Wonderful Experience
I recently had the opportunity to spend about half an hour behind the wheel of one of the most impressive cars on the road: the Rolls-Royce Dawn. The driving experience of the Dawn is so unlike anything else I've ever driven that I ended up walking away with a blown mind and a changed perspective on cars in general.
Driving the Dawn makes you feel like you're floating an inch off the ground everywhere you go. I understand that saying a large luxury car irons the road is cliche by now, but that's exactly what the Dawn does. I barely felt speed bumps, and the only clue my brain had that the roads were anything other than perfect tarmac came from my eyes. The 6.6-liter twin-turbo V12 outputs an "adequate" 563 horsepower and can hustle this 3-ton behemoth to 60 miles per hour faster than an E46 M3.
That's pretty neat, but what's really impressive is how Rolls managed to make the Dawn's acceleration a complete non-event. When you open the throttle, the speed builds in a crescendo -- and before you realize it, the world is moving past you faster than Johnny Law thinks it should. The steering is light, but I never doubted that the Dawn would go exactly where I wanted it to go. The heavy Rolls defies physics by remaining completely even-keeled in turns, exhibiting a complete lack of body roll. It was nothing short of incredible.
Everything about the Dawn is made to make the act of driving completely effortless. The car features the suicide doors that Rolls-Royce is now famous for, and they make getting in and out of a car simpler than you'd ever guess. When you drive at highway speeds with the top down, you're not accosted by the wind, and it remains quiet enough that you can have a conversation with your passenger without needing to raise your voice a decibel. I'm fairly certain that the steering-column-mounted gear selector was designed to be easily operated by your right pinkie finger so you wouldn't need to utilize more than a single muscle group. The most difficult thing I did while driving the Dawn was closing the driver's door, only to discover later that there was a button that would close it for me.
I knew the Dawn would be a good car going into it -- and for $400,000, it had better be. That said, I wasn't prepared for just how impressed I'd be. When you're behind the wheel of the Dawn with the top down on a beautiful day, there's nothing wrong with the world. You have nowhere to be, there are no pressing appointments, and the future is full of potential. Everything is beautiful, and nothing hurts. In a word, it's wonderful.