If you're in the market for a luxurious classic car and your checklist doesn't have the Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit, it's incomplete. How do you leave out a top-of-the-line ride that reigned supreme for almost 20 years? This full-size luxury car has a 6.75-liter V8 engine under the hood, churning out 189 horsepower and 320 lb-ft of torque. While not earth-shattering by today's standards, it was enough to propel it from 0 to 60 mph in a respectable 9.5 seconds while maintaining its luxurious poise. Inside the cabin, the car is packed with fine leather materials enveloping every surface. You'll also get polished wood veneers gleaming under soft ambient lighting and thick, supple carpets. Every detail, from the precisely controlled air conditioning to the delicately crafted leather, speaks bespoke luxury. In its heyday, the Rolls Royce Silver Spirit commanded a hefty price tag north of $100,000. Today, used Silver Spirits range in price from around $20,000 for well-worn examples to over $90,000 for pristine, low-mileage ones. This Rolls Royce Silver Spirit review will extensively cover the details of this luxury car, including pricing, interior and exterior features, and performance specs.
In 1980, the Silver Spirit burst onto the scene, inheriting the mantle of its highly successful predecessor, the Silver Shadow. Its debut brought good tidings for Rolls-Royce, with its 6.75-liter V8 engine offering refined power, a redesigned suspension for improved handling, and a spacious cabin that coddled passengers in plush leather. It held up to its title as a car designed for people who appreciate elegance and performance. The 1980s saw the Silver Spirit evolve and blossom. In 1983, the long-wheelbase Silver Spur joined the lineup, offering the clientele even more luxurious rear legroom. By 1989, the Silver Spirit II had arrived, bringing subtle yet significant upgrades. Bosch fuel injection replaced carburetors, enhancing power and efficiency. The suspension underwent further refinement, further bolstering ride comfort. The interior received touches of modernity, like updated dashboard controls and a slightly revised center console. As the 90s unfolded, the Silver Spirit continued to captivate hearts. Celebrities, royalty, and captains of industry found themselves drawn to its opulent embrace. It became a symbol of success and sophistication, adorning red carpets and gracing the driveways of the rich and powerful. By 1998, Rolls Royce pulled the plug on the Silver Spirit. The dawn of the 21st century brought new priorities and demands for automobiles. As a result, the Silver Spirit bowed out of production. Over its 18-year reign, the Silver Spirit witnessed continuous evolution. With over 17,000 units produced, it became one of the most successful Rolls-Royce models ever. Today, these rolling works of art continue to turn heads, their classic silhouettes defying the passage of time.
Beneath the stately bonnet of the Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit is an L-series V8 engine offered in various configurations throughout the Silver Spirit's reign. Early models between 1980 and 1986 sported a carbureted 6.75L V8, churning 189 horsepower and a respectable 320 lb-ft of torque. While not a priority, fuel economy hovered around 12-14 mpg combined. Later iterations from around 1987 to 1998 saw the arrival of fuel injection, boosting horsepower to 233 and torque to 340 lb-ft. This improved both performance and efficiency, nudging combined mpg closer to 16mpg. While 0-60 mph sprints in 9.5 seconds might not set your hair on fire, the Silver Spirit's engine delivered effortless acceleration, serenely propelling its considerable weight (around 5,200 lbs) with remarkable smoothness. The car's top speed hovers around 125 mph, more than enough for a stately cruise while maintaining the trademark Rolls-Royce refinement. Gear changes from the 3-speed (later 4-speed) automatic transmission are also barely perceptible. The V8 wouldn't win any drag races compared to contemporary luxury cars. Still, its focus on smooth driving experience is on par with more high-strung competitors like Mercedes' V8s or Jaguar's AJ6.
Open the heavy door, and you'll step into the Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit's interior, with lots of buttery-soft leather and wood materials stretched almost everywhere. Polished chrome gleams from the steering wheel and other parts of the dashboard and door panels. The Silver Spirit has comfortable seats with electric adjustments that glide silently. There is also supportive bolstering that cradles your body and, of course, generous legroom. The dashboard is included as it's decked with polished wood veneers. The analog dials with classic chrome bezels add flair to the wood finish. Even the air vents, meticulously integrated into the design, look great, too. The center console houses controls for the car. Expectedly, each button and knob operates with the precision of a Swiss watch with smooth, silent movements. Available controls housed in the center console include seat adjustment, window, radio, and air conditioning controls. Like most Rolls Royce cars, the Silver Spirit features double-glazed windows and sound-deadening materials that make the interior tranquil, broken only by the gentle murmur of the engine. In the back seat, the Silver Spirit offers impressive plush, manually reclining seats that invite you to stretch out and surrender to the journey. The Rolls Royce Silver Spirit's interior is undeniably inviting. Little wonder it was highly sought after in its days by people who wanted a cozy car that didn't slouch in performance.
The front of the Silver Spirit exudes an air of quiet authority. The iconic Rolls-Royce grille stands tall with a vertical waterfall of chrome bars guarding the car's radiator. Flanking it are rectangular headlights with separate high beams that pierce the darkness. Honestly, the headlights still look great even today. Beneath them is the sturdy bumper that completes the picture of the car's front. Even the side profile tells a story of attention to detail. The long, uninterrupted coastline stretching from bumper to bumper is subtle and solid. The chrome trim around the windows, door handles, mirrors, and wheel arches adds sparkle to the sides. Housed within the wheel wells are sturdy tires. Depending on the specific model year, their size might range from 205/70R14 to 235/60R15. Rolls-Royce chose them to hit the mark for impressive ride quality with minimal tire noise. The imposing doors swing wide open on chrome hinges. As mentioned earlier, the door handles are sleek, elongated, and sturdy. They don't look like the type that'll break or begin to malfunction in a few years. Turning to the rear, the Silver Spirit continues with its elegance. The trunk lid slopes gently downward, meeting the subtly raised taillights with their rectangular shape that mirrors the headlamps. The overall impression is like a regular car, but with a Rolls Royce badge to differentiate. Surprisingly, the trunk offers ample space and has plush carpeting all around it.
The Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit may not boast of the tech of modern cars, but it did have enough to make occupants love riding in it. It offered climate controls, electric seats, cruise control, power windows and locks, a stereo system, ABS, airbags, and lots more. Some trim levels offered other features like heated rear seats, an electronically-controlled traction assistance system, bar cabinets, crystal decanters, and many more.
The Silver Spirit offered a range of trims, adding a touch of extra grandeur throughout its 18-year production span. The quintessential Silver Spirit, exuding understated elegance, can be found in decent condition for as low as $20,000. However, pristine examples with low mileage can fetch upwards of $50,000. The limited edition Park Ward trim, which has an extended rear door, bespoke wood marquetry, and even rear-seat picnic tables, can cost about $60,000, while its limousine variant will set you back up to $80,000. Again, these are just ballpark figures, but you can get a good deal on a pre-owned and well-maintained unit if you use Exotic Car Traders' services.
The allure of the Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit doesn't fade with time. It's timeless, luxurious, elegant, and wherever it goes, it'll draw some attention to you. And if you're captivated by the Silver Spirit's charm, remember that finding one in top shape won’t be a problem. Platforms like Exotic Car Trader make buying and selling exotic cars online a breeze. Their user-friendly interface connects you with a global network of passionate enthusiasts, simplifying the process of finding the perfect Silver Spirit or a new owner for your current car. The Rolls Royce Silver Spirit has lots of latent power, a plush interior, an iconic silhouette, and a unique blend of luxury and serenity that continues to turn heads even today. You should consider riding in one of these to experience the thrill of riding in an iconic vintage Rolls Royce.
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