The Rolls Royce index rose as the super rich continued to buy the luxury car

A cooling economy hasn’t stopped the rich from buying a Rolls-Royce.

“We have not seen any decline in order intake here in recent months,” Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Torsten Müller-Ötvös told Bloomberg Television. “I’m cautiously optimistic about this year.”

While Rolls-Royce is not immune to a recession, the global distribution of its customers somewhat protects the luxury car maker, the CEO said. The British company is coming off a record year, having delivered more than 6,000 cars in 2022.

Rolls-Royce, owned by Germany’s BMW AG, plans to sell only battery-powered cars by the end of this decade. The British manufacturer in October showed the specteran all-electric coupe with a zero-to-60 mph sprint time of 4.4 seconds.

Orders for the Spectre, which should arrive in the fourth quarter, “exceed our highest expectations,” the CEO said, adding that the brand is attracting new customers because it’s electric.

The overall luxury market may cool down a bit this year and it is too early to predict how China will develop, although it is encouraging that travel from the Asian country is increasing, Müller-Ötvös said.

“Once the pandemic is over in China, I see growth patterns happening there as well,” he said. “The rest of the world is relatively stable.”

Rolls-Royce Sales up 8% last year to 6,021 cars as growing demand in the Americas offset declines in China, with customers spending around €500,000 ($537,100) per car on average. The Cullinan, the brand’s first sport utility vehicle, is Rolls-Royce’s best-selling model accounting for nearly half of deliveries, the CEO said.

–With help from Guy Collins and Alix Steel.

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