London: Britain’s Rolls-Royce Motor Cars said Monday that it enjoyed record annual sales of its luxury status symbol vehicles, as the broader sector grappled with pandemic fallout including a semiconductor shortage.
The German-owned luxury carmaker said sales surged almost 50 per cent to 5,586 cars with records set in most regions including the Americas, Asia-Pacific and Greater China, as well as in multiple countries around the world.
Demand was powered by its new “Ghost” coupe and 2.6-tonne, 350,000-euro Cullinan SUV.
“2021 was a phenomenal year for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars,” said Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Chief Executive Torsten Muller-Otvos in the statement.
“We delivered more cars than at any time in the marque’s 117-year history with unprecedented demand for all products in every global market,” he said.
Rolls-Royce is, meanwhile, preparing to launch Spectre, its first all-electric car.
Founded at the beginning of the 20th century, the emblematic British brand was bought by German auto giant BMW in 1998.
Monday’s sales figures contrast sharply with broader industry data, which showed last week that UK car manufacturing had in fact stalled last year.
Britain’s mainly foreign-owned automakers produced 1.65 million vehicles in 2021, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders.
That was up just one percent from 2020 — but almost 29 per cent lower than the market’s pre-pandemic level in 2019.
The pandemic erupted in early 2020 and initially led to a plunge in demand. While buyers have returned, a worldwide shortage in computer chips, which are vital components in all types of vehicles, has held back production.