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The Top Gear car review: Rolls-Royce Drophead

£340,616
9/10
Overall verdict

For: 

Truly opulent

Against: 

Makes you about as inconspicuous as appearing on telly
The world's best luxury car in convertible form. Does it work? Yes, if you're happy being the centre of attention everywhere you go...

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Our choice

Rolls-Royce

II 2dr Auto

£360,488
N/A
19mpg
5.60s
453bhp
347g/km

What we say: 

The Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe is a unique way to travel, perhaps more like a beautifully built water craft than a car.

What is it?

Can you carry this off? Winning the Lottery isn’t enough - you need a freakish level of assured unflappability to pilot what is basically a yacht, complete with decking.

Driving

You don’t drive a Phantom like a racing car, because it takes up so much road space. But the steering is accurate and the reactions faithful. It’s fun to be brisk in; just don’t bother being fast.

The 6.75-litre V12 is more than adequate, graceful and buttery-smooth. And well able to overtake when it’s fitting to do so. Auto kickdowns can be a bit jerky though, and there’s no tiptronic over-ride.

On the inside

It would get windy in the back with the roof down, and rear seat room is adequate rather than gigantic, but up front this is gorgeously sumptuous. Oh and with the roof up it’s refined and quiet, a cocoon from the evil storms.

When you really poke about the cabin, there is the odd plasticky switch. But the craftsmanship of wood and leather and metal and paint is beautiful, and the underlying solidity unimpeachable. The Phantom is a banker.

Owning

Well, depreciation expressed as a percentage isn’t bad: it’ll lose half its value in three years. Unfortunately that means a grand a week. But look on the bright side: alongside that, insurance and servicing and fuel will feel like bargains.

Highlights from the range

Title 0–62 CO2 MPG BHP Price
The fastest
II 2dr Auto
5.6s 347g/km 19.1 453 £340,616
The cheapest
II 2dr Auto
5.6s 347g/km 19.1 453 £340,616
The greenest
II 2dr Auto
5.6s 347g/km 19.1 453 £340,616

Wildcard

How about something completely different?

Wildcard

7/10

Fiat 500

£10,635£21,520
A Riva Aquarama and a Fiat 500C to get about on land...