Rolls-Royce for kids may be the world’s smallest luxury car
Rolls-Royce’s newest bespoke commission may be tiny, but it has been designed and built from the ground up to make a big difference for anyone who drives it.
The Rolls-Royce SRH, officially unveiled at the company’s Goodwood headquarters on Wednesday, was built specifically for children awaiting an operation at St Richard’s Hospital Pediatric Day Surgery.
Like a full-size Rolls-Royce, it comes with a two-tone exterior paint finish complete with hand-painted coachline. The wheel centers are self-righting so the RR badge is always upright, and the interior is trimmed in leather.
It even has the iconic Spirt of Ecstasy emblem and the iconic grille of contemporary Rolls-Royce cars, but this one is battery powered and can only hit 10mph. Nevertheless, the car still took over 400 hours to complete and even required investment in new chassis technology.
“I am immensely proud of what the team has achieved,” said Lawrie Mewse, who led the project.
Rolls-Royce is by no means the only carmaker building miniaturized versions of its current model line-up. In recent months, McLaren has launched a toy version of its P1 hypercar and Morgan a child’s version of its EV3 electric three-wheeler.
However, this car is unique and was built specifically for children at the hospital so that they can drive themselves to the operating room along corridors specially re-decorated to resemble roads, complete with road signs.
“The Pediatric Unit at St Richard’s Hospital, Chichester does such vital work in providing essential care to young people and their families,” said Torsten Müller-Ötvös, CEO, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars. “We hope that the Rolls‑Royce SRH will serve to make the experience for young people during treatment a little less stressful.”
Since formally opening in December 2014, the pediatric day surgery service has performed operations on 6,000 children.
“It’s wonderful seeing a smiley face on the way to theatre, rather than an apprehensive one,” said Sue Nicholls, pediatric matron at Western Sussex Hospitals NSH Foundation Trust. “We know boys and girls alike will love driving it and in the coming years it will help turn a daunting experience into a more fun and enjoyable one for hundreds and hundreds of children.” JB