After celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2011, the famous and prestigious statuette that adorns the radiators and grilles of the Rolls-Royce evolved in 2013 with a new illuminated variant.
It will be over in 2020, not because of a decision by the British manufacturer but of new European regulations on light pollution.
The statuette inspired by Eleanor Thornton (mistress of Lord Montagu of Beaulieu) was created in 1911 by the English sculptor Charles Sykes to embellish the radiator caps of the prestigious brand.
Made of metal for a little over a century, it was illuminated in 2012 on the Rolls-Royce 102EX Concept which was a "Zero emission" Phantom, that is to say with an electric motor.
The illuminated grille statuette was also featured on the odd Rolls-Royce Vision Next 100 coupe in 2016.
The backlit Flying Lady pollutes… in Europe
The "Flying Lady" which has always adorned the front of the Rolls-Royce is no longer available in its transparent and backlit version.
We therefore owe this decision to elected officials and European decision-makers who believe that the illuminated sculpture does not comply with the new European regulations on light pollution. If so, this is the reality.
But that's not all since the European Union imposes a retroactivity of its law and demands that the discreetly illuminated statuette be withdrawn as soon as possible from all Rolls-Royces which are currently equipped with it in Europe.
The option remains available everywhere else in the world, but Europe in its famous do-anything posture thinks it is saving the world by doing so. It’s not a few hundred discreetly lit little statuettes that will change anything in the ecological state of the planet.
The owners who are in possession of a luminous “Spirit of Ecstasy” statuette therefore have the obligation to go to their nearest Rolls-Royce dealer so that the statuette is “officially” disconnected and replaced by another mascot made in steel (at no extra cost), silver plated, gold plated, solid silver or solid gold.
For owners who choose a steel "Flying Lady", the English manufacturer will reimburse the option price (~ € 3,500), for others, this amount will be deducted from the price charged for a new statuette.
Rolls-Royce complies and complies with European legislation
The manufacturer reacted and declared:
" About 18 months ago, we sent our dealers a first note saying that we were removing the "Spirit of Ecstasy illuminated" option and that the statuette should no longer be offered to the brand's customers. It was then removed from the list of options ”.
The brand's representative continued by explaining that the case did not end there as European lawmakers demanded more and demanded the removal of all statuettes.
Finally, the brand's spokesperson specifies: “Unfortunately, we have to tell our customers who have chosen this ornament that European law requires us to disconnect their backlit Spirit of Ecstasy statuette. "
We are now waiting for the European authorities to legislate on the extinction of the headlights of the vehicles at night, the end of the daytime running lights and the removal of all lights and screens installed in the passenger compartment of cars.
On the other hand, there is still nothing on the subject of turning off the billboards at night when entering towns.
The lobby of the installers of backlit panels is therefore more powerful than that of the owners of Rolls-Royces put into circulation since mid-2013.