The Spirit of Ecstasy is one of, if not the most, iconic automotive mascots in the world. Redesigning such an icon, therefore, it isn’t an undertaking one takes lightly – which is why about 830 hours of design modelling and wind tunnel testing have gone into the rebirth of the figurine that’s on every Rolls-Royce bonnet.

The robed lady now stands all of 82.73mm tall, a slight paring down from her predecessor’s 100.01mm. She’s had her flowing robes, sometimes (wrongly) described as wings, delicately reshaped for a better, slightly-more aerodynamic profile – thereby contributing to the drag coefficient of 0.26 for the electric Spectre, the lowest of any Rolls-Royce yet. 

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But apart from the numbers, the Spirit of Ecstasy speaks of the marque’s evolving design language. Where she once stood tall with her feet together, she now braces low, eyes forward, with one foot in front of the other. 

In other words, poised for action – fitting, since every single Spectre, the marque’s first all-electric make, will roll out of Goodwood with the redesigned figurine front and centre. The Spirit of Ecstasy would literally be leading the brand into the future, as all future units will also have the new version of the figurine.

Says CEO of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Torsten Muller-Otvos, ““The Spirit of Ecstasy is the most famous and desirable automotive mascot in the world. More than just a symbol, she is the embodiment of our brand, and a constant source of inspiration and pride for the marque and its clients.”

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He continues, “Like our brand, she has always moved with the times while staying true to her nature and character. In her new form she is more streamlined and graceful than ever before – the perfect emblem for the most aerodynamic Rolls-Royce ever created, and for gracing the prow of our bold electric future.”

This comes a full 111 years after the Spirit of Ecstasy was first registered as intellectual property on February 6, 1911. She was drawn up by Charles Sykes, a sculptor and designer who brought his oeuvre to life for every Rolls-Royce until 1939 himself. 

Thereafter, the figurines were produced via lost-wax casting, which duplicates a metal sculpture from an existing original. These are finished by hand, which technically means that every Spirit of Ecstasy ever made, much like fingerprints, are uniquely imperfect and therefore distinct.

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The figurines are typically made from stainless steel, but are also available in carbon fibre, solid silver, plated gold and illuminated crystal. And with this redesign and bold steps into the electric vehicle space, who knows what the British automakers will come up with next.