Design

Rolls-Royce introduces a new Dawn with a historic name

The Rolls-Royce Silver Bullet takes its name from years of company history.

Photo courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars

The sleek silver large-body convertible is a bit of a relic of a bygone era. No, further back than the days of the Toyota Solara and Chrysler Sebring. The trend that started near the last bit of the Roaring 20s and continued in its prime until the late 60s.

The Jazz Age decadence and free spirit of the early part of the 20th Century is embodied in the latest model from Rolls-Royce, the Dawn Silver Bullet Collection. The new vehicle is the first Rolls-Royce Collection Car of the new decade.

Rolls-Royce Dawn Silver Bullet The car features a unique silver paint job.Photo courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars

Its name comes from the company's storied past, which includes cars named the Silver Dawn, Silver King, Silver Silence and Silver Spectre.

This particular model features an ultra-metallic silver paint finish. Its aero cowling moves the car from brute to glamorous speedster. It features a rakish silver centre spine brings the bodywork into the cabin. A vapour-blasted titanium finisher completes the aero cowling windbreak and proudly displays the Silver Bullet name and silhouette.

Rolls-Royce Dawn Silver Bullet Artisan design touches fill the car with bespoke elements.Photo courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars

The Dawn Silver Bullet Collection features dark exterior detailing; dark headlights and a new dark front bumper finisher, providing a dominant and determined expression in heighted contrast to the silver hue. The part-polished wheels offer a translucent shadow finish with a single silver pinstripe.

Inside, the Dawn Silver Bullet Collection has a unique open-pore carbon fibre fascia and a quilted transmission tunnel with design cues taken from a leather jacket.

Rolls-Royce Dawn Silver Bullet Designers sketched out the car's design well in advance of one reaching production. Here is one of the sketches showing the transmission tunnel design.Photo courtesy of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars

Just 50 of these models will be made. Pricing is likely in "if you need to ask, you can't afford it" territory.

The company will be be curating a special series of "Silver Bullet Drives" featuring epic road trip suggestions for Rolls-Royce owners in its Whispers app.

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

Hyundai has completely refreshed the Santa Fe for 2021.

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

The Hyundai Santa Fe is getting more than just a traditional mid-cycle update for the 2021 model year. It's closer to a generational shift with new powertrains, a new platform, and more premium features.

If you're saying to yourself, "Didn't they just change it?" to yourself right now, you're not wrong. The current Santa Fe shifted generations just about two years ago as the company prepared to introduce the three-row Palisade. When the Palisade arrived, the Santa Fe was relegated to the new two-row Santa Fe and a holdover three-row Santa Fe for a year before going to just a two-row model for 2020.

The SUV has a fresh grille and headlamp design as well as new front and rear fascia.Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe has a face that looks like a blend of the Palisade and the Vision T concept car, which was first shown at last year's LA Auto Show. Its headlights carry over the Spartan helmet-like design that first appeared on the Kona. T-shaped LED daytime running lights flow from the headlights to the sides of the grill. The lower grille eschews the crucible-shape that is on the Palisade and offers a new, sophisticated look.

Hyundai has made the car beefier looking but also gentler with posterior that's sophisticated with arrow-like taillights that are connected through the center of the tailgate by a light bar.

Twenty-inch wheels are available as part of a Luxury Package that includes front and back lower bumpers and side cladding that match the body paint color, rather than the traditional matte black.

Hyundai has already revealed that the 2021 Santa Fe will come with hybrid and plug-in hybrid variants in Europe. They have not confirmed which, if either of those powertrains is coming to the U.S. More information is expected to be revealed soon.

2021 Hyundai Santa Fe

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai aimed for a premium SUV with the Palisade, to thunderous applause from industry experts and buyers, and it looks like that design mantra is holding true in the New Santa Fe. The company promotes the model as having more "space, comfort, and convenience" than the outgoing model. That's thanks in large part to the new platform the SUV is riding on.

The new third-gen Hyundai platform allows for improvements inn performance, handling, fuel efficiency, and safety. Additionally, it features more crash resistance. With the SUV market growing increasingly competitive, it's understandable that Hyundai would want to shift the model to the new underpinnings ASAP.

The lower half of the dashboard has been redesigned for 2021 and the cabin has been outfitted with soft-touch materials. The center console has also been redesigned and now floats and features similar instrumentation to the Hyundai Nexo and Palisade. This leaves a good amount of space between driver and front passenger for storage.

A new 10.25-inch infotainment screen floats on the dashboard.Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

The new 10.25-inch infotainment touch screen appears to float above the dashboard. A new 12.3-inch all-digital instrument cluster sits in front of the driver.

The new Santa Fe will be available in Europe starting September 2020. There is not yet confirmation as to when it comes to the U.S. or what it will cost.

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Two British brands are coming together to launch a new project.

Photo courtesy of Lotus Cars

The two companies have performance-oriented contemporary design in common, but that's not all. British car company Lotus has begun working with Savile Row outfitter and bespoke tailor Norton & Sons on a new project.

For now, both companies have been relatively mum on what they're working on, but a few key details have snuck out. The first of which is that they say their creation is "For the Drivers". A clue and a tagline in one.

There are promises that the creation will, "incorporate both brands' core values of light-weighting, performance-oriented contemporary design and sporting durability." They'll make an official announcement later this year.

Lotus x Norton & Sons Norton & Sons is located on London's famed Savile Row.Photo courtesy of Lotus Cars

Lotus has been undergoing a brand renaissance since new shareholders and management took over in 2018. In its heyday, the company had the Elan, which was recently voted as one of Britain's best classic cars, had vehicles featured in James Bond films, and was winning at the racetrack with enough frequency to claim a level of dominance.

Recently, the company has made plans for a quick and electrified future. They announced that the Lotus Evija hypercar has enter its initial build stage.

On the more pedestrian end of the spectrum, the Evora has gotten a cheaper, more daily-driver-focused variant and Elise Classic Heritage Editions were shown for the first time.

Norton & Sons was founded in 1821 and celebrates its bicentennial next year. It has clothed some of history's most stylish and inspiring men, including Hollywood legends such as actor Cary Grant, British royalty including King Edward VII, and performance pioneers such as Chuck Yeager, the first man to break the speed of sound.

Patrick Grant, Director of Norton & Sons, said: "The year I was born Lotus won the Formula 1 Constructors' Championship. Growing up it was the definitive British sports car brand. James Bond drove a Lotus Esprit and it was the car that every kid in the playground dreamed of owning. Colin Chapman is revered as an engineering icon, a pioneer and an entrepreneur of exceptional personal style. Norton & Sons has a long tradition of making for sportsmen and pioneers, so Lotus and Norton & Sons feels like a perfect fit."

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