I used to think that paying upwards of $300K for an automobile was outrageous – that is until I had the opportunity to test-drive a Rolls-Royce Phantom and see for myself what all the fuss is about. That experience showed me that when it comes to car interiors, you really do get what you pay for.
As an auto trimmer, I was captivated by the Phantom’s cabin. Every panel was wrapped in leather, the headliner was covered in fiber-optic lights and the woodwork was impeccable. The fact that all the work was done by hand left me enthralled.
Sure, $300K is a lot to pay for a car. But it also buys drivers a level of craftsmanship that is unrivaled by most automakers.
Elite manufacturers, like Rolls-Royce, Bentley and Aston Martin, produce vehicles with passion, dedication and a supreme attention to detail. Their cars are made-to-order by highly skilled craftsmen using time-tested methods and only the highest-quality materials.
I may never be able to afford one. But as a professional, I can recognize excellence and say, without a doubt, that the high cost is justified.
Take, for example, the interior of a Bentley Mulsanne – which features no less than 15 hides, is trimmed in hand-carved wood and takes over 170 hours to complete. Robin Page, head of Bentley Interior Design, describes the process of building one as “the exact opposite of mass production”.
Given that it takes Bentley’s trimmers a minimum of two days to hand wrap the Mulsanne’s steering wheel, I’d say he has a point.
To see for yourself how much work goes into building a super luxury car’s interior, check out this behind-the-scenes video taken at Bentley’s “Leather and Seats Center of Excellence”.