LED Spirit of Ecstasy runs afoul of EU lighting Rules
High-rollers will get refund, new options for their Rollers
The Rolls-Royce Spirit of Ecstasy has just had some of her joy removed by government ruling. The light-up version of the iconic Flying Lady has been banned for violating EU regulations, and that means that not only has the feature been dropped, but that Rolls will need to issue a fix to any customers who have already gotten their car equipped with the gizmo.
Commissioned in 1909 by Lord Montagu of Beaulieu for his own Rolls-Royce cars as The Whisperer, and said to have used his secretary Eleanor Thornton as a model, then slightly reinterpreted in 1911 to adorn all of the brand’s vehicles, the Spirit of Ecstasy has been on nearly every Rolls since. The LED-lit Flying Lady came in 2017 and was a popular option.
But the European Union’s vehicle approval laws don’t allow for an illuminated hood ornament, and so, reports The Daily Mail, Rolls will be dimming some lights and issuing some refunds.
“I paid £3,500 for this option, and it’s being switched off like a light bulb,” the Mail reported one driver as saying, obviously less than impressed.
The report says the option was removed from the list in early 2019 for EU countries, but now Rolls-Royce has told the Mail that the automaker will need to remove the feature from cars already sold with it.
The plan is to issue a full refund of the expensive option cost to all affected customers and give them a replacement in the form of the traditional silver-plated Spirit or one of another from a list of options they can give customers.