Retrospect: Rolls Royce Camargue

This is the rarest Rolls Royce

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A Rolls Royce Camargue is a coupé of understated elegance. Styled by Pininfarina of Turin, Italy, and hand-built by Mulliner Park Ward, the Rolls Royce Camargue owner has the pleasure of being among the fortunate few to own a completely individualized motorcar. Apart from the pleasure of owning and driving a Rolls Royce Camargue, there is the added attraction of long-term value. It is the rarest Rolls Royce. The Camargue was the most expensive automobile in the world during its production. The traditionally luxurious interior appointments combined with the finest automotive engineering makes the Rolls Royce Camargue the ultimate personal luxury coupé.

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A fast, sporting machine built in the classic European tradition, the Camargue was the quintessential Flagship. Performance, impeccable road manners, silence, and comfort come together to complete a remarkable motoring experience. Everything about the Rolls Royce Camargue is designed and engineered to appeal to the most discriminating owner who appreciates the very finest in British hand-craftsmanship. As a symbol of prestige, there is no more impressive acquisition to your lifestyle.

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The Camargue is a coupé with the spaciousness of a four-door saloon. Open the extra-wide doors to enter a different world. The cabin offers exceptional comfort. The seats rival the luxury of fine home furnishings. The Rolls Royce Camargue is the first Rolls Royce model to use the automatic bi-level air conditioning system. Each system has its own thermostat to control upper and lower temperatures. Once set, no further intervention is needed. This Rolls Royce exclusive took eight years to develop. In subsequent years it was added to the entire Rolls Royce range.

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Italian burl walnut veneers accent the carefully tailored hand-stitched Connolly leather. Deep hand-crafted 100% wool carpet lines the floor of the cabin and the boot. Everything is designed for pure luxury. The wide front seats are electrically operated; the head restraints are manually adjustable. Folding center armrests are standard for the front and rear seats. Power windows and power door locks with centralized locking feature adds to Camargue’s security. Automatic speed control maintains a predetermined speed.

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The Camargue is the rarest of all Rolls Royce models. Its styling set new standards of elegance, sophistication, and refinement. It took five months to build. Only 530 were built during its tenure from 1975 until 1986. It was designed by Pininfarina of Italy and sold for $147,000 USD. This Flagship coupé is built on the Silver Shadow platform, Mulliner Park Ward hand-crafted the Camargue to perfection. It shared no other exterior features with any other Rolls Royce. The Camargue is the ultimate personal luxury coupé.

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The architecture is the pinnacle of British craftsmanship. This large four-seat two-door saloon is constructed of stressed steel. The bonnet, boot lid, and doors are fashioned from aluminium alloy. It is equipped with energy absorbing impact-resistant front and rear wrap-around bumpers fitted with hard polyurethane inserts. The Camargue is built as Sir Henry built his cars; one at a time and mostly by hand. Every Rolls Royce is constructed slowly, patiently, and meticulously.

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The Camargue is a coastal region in the south of France. The automobile is just as mysterious as its namesake. This is the first post-war production Rolls Royce that wasn’t designed in-house. Paolo Martin is the designer that created this mystique. Pininfarina of Italy is renowned for their exotic Ferrari designs. This is a Rolls Royce like no other. Its dramatic design also created controversy…automobile journalists and enthusiasts world-wide either liked it or they didn’t.

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There has been an avant-garde Rolls Royce in every generation

Exotic 1

Silver Cloud III with aluminium coachcrafting by HJ Mulliner

Exotic 2

Exotic 3

Exotic 4

Exotic 5

Forza

Wraith…the contemporary manifestation of Rolls Royce hyper-luxury

Camargue 1

The avant-garde design notoriously marked the Camargue as a one-of-a-kind. Its architecture is one sweep from nose to tail. It is the first Rolls Royce to sport a slightly inclined radiator grille; it slants at a seven degree angle. The Rolls Royce Camargue was designed during the neo-classic era; it’s as classic as it is contemporary. The design clearly looked to the future. It is a very, very, special Rolls Royce.

The Camargue’s imposing stature is 206.5” in length, 75.5” in width, and rides upon a 120” wheelbase. It is fitted with a four-wheel independent suspension. The front uses lower wishbones with compliant controlled upper levers, helical coil springs, telescopic dampers, and an anti-roll bar. The rear suspension is fitted with trailing arms, helical coil springs, suspension struts, gas springs, and an anti-roll bar.

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Automatic height control maintains the Camargue’s poise regardless of load or road conditions. This sophisticated system is so sensitive that it compensates for fuel used from the gas tank. The hydraulic system is operated by engine-driven pumps. The leveling system is set-up at the rear suspension. The height control feature guarantees the correct posture under changing load/road conditions. It ensures handling characteristics are constant and the Rolls Royce magic carpet ride is consistent. This system is obscenely expensive to maintain. Parts and service for the Camargue is outrageous.

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The Camargue is equipped with the Rolls Royce dual hydraulic braking system. The master cylinder has dual pistons with two dedicated brake lines to facilitate independent front and rear brake systems. It uses mineral oil as the fluid medium to increase the life of the braking system. The engine supplies the pressure. It comes standard with four-wheel disc brakes with the front set ventilated for rapid heat dissipation.

The Camargue is powered by the Rolls Royce 6.75 litre 412 CID 16-valve V8 engine. It is tuned to be more spirited than the other Rolls Royce models. It produces 247 hp @ 4,500 rpm with 540 Nm of peak torque @ 2,500 rpm. A refined version of the GM Turbo Hydra-Matic 3-speed automatic transmission is mated to the engine. The transmission has a torque converter and a Rolls Royce Motors electric gear selector.

Refinements through its production life include power rack & pinion steering new for the 1977 model year, rear independent suspension for the 1979 model year, and Solex carburetors replaced the old SU carburetors.

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The Rolls Royce Camargue brought new standards of comfort & convenience in tune with contemporary motoring and carried on the Rolls Royce tradition of building the best car in the world. It is the rarest Rolls Royce model with only 530 being built. Its exotic appearance is designed by Pininfarina of Italy and hand-crafted by Mulliner Park Ward in the UK. It is for the most discerning owner who appreciates the finest in British coachcrafting. The Rolls Royce Camargue in all its majesty is a spirit of excellence from the Spirit of Ecstasy. Power, performance, and presence in an understated personal luxury coupé are available to a chosen few…with the Rolls Royce Camargue.

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Special thanks to Rodd Sala at Park Ward Motors Museum

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Park Ward

Spirit of Ecstasy

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Rolls Royce Camargue

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NotoriousLuxury

One Response to “Retrospect: Rolls Royce Camargue”

  1. Keep it! Its value will hit the sky as they are the most controversial Rolls Royce in history! Either you love them or you hate them. I love them and always will! Thanks for stopping by the site. I am working on a new Rolls Royce super site as we type!

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