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Rolls-Royce just unveiled the most amazingly ludicrous self-driving luxury vehicle

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
The future of luxury.
  • Mike Murphy
By Mike Murphy

Technology editor

Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

If you’re wealthy enough to afford a Rolls-Royce, and a chauffeur to ferry you around in it, then the idea of self-driving cars wouldn’t seem that foreign a concept. But like every other car manufacturer, Rolls-Royce seems not to want to get left behind in the rush to build autonomous vehicles.

At a June 16 press event in London, the luxury carmaker unveiled its newest concept car, the Rolls-Royce 103EX, its vision of what the future of one-percenter travel will look like.

The nearly 20-foot vehicle looks like something ripped right out of the retro-futurist settings of a Tim Burton Batman film. It features a single door that opens like a barn door into an interior that is larger and better appointed than many New York apartments.

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
Kick back and relax.

The couch inside—these are not regular car seats, it’s really a couch—seems to seat only two, meaning any waitstaff will likely need to follow along in another, presumably less grand, vehicle.

The concept car is electric, has a self-stowing luggage compartment, and doesn’t need a steering wheel or dashboard, as those would be “superfluous in this model,” Rolls-Royce told The Verge.

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
Where the help can scurry around to to grab the bags.

It also seems to have some sort of holographic internal display that forms its logo out of semi-luminescent specs that swirl around the interior of the car. According to a video from Rolls-Royce, it’s an AI assistant with a “soul,” called Eleanor. It’s unclear whether this would be part of an additional upgrade package, or a futuristic version of OnStar.

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars
Rolling off the production line.

While there’s no guarantee that a vehicle like this will be hitting the streets of the nicer parts of town anytime soon—or even at all—it does show that Rolls-Royce has a plan for bringing its distinctive brand of conspicuous consumption into the self-driving age. “In a future where transport is commoditised—void of beauty, space and form—Rolls-Royce will stand apart,” the company said on the car’s webpage.

Rolls-Royce also released a 360º video of its mad concept car. Check out the video below on mobile (or Google Cardboard) to get the full effect:

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