Everyone knows why you buy a Rolls-Royce.
It’s not for where it can take you, but for what it can help you bring home.
Let’s be honest, a car like that isn’t designed or bought with anything but ego in mind…
So when I went to test-drive a couple $400,000 coupes just outside D.C., I was a bit surprised by what I learned.
Rolls-Royce’s flagship model, the Phantom, is powered by a 6.75-liter V12 engine. It puts the engine in the F150 I use to tow my boat to shame.
The car is all about raw power: economic, social, and mechanical.
Owning one is the apex of success. It shows the rest of the world you’ve got it — and you aren’t afraid to flaunt it.
And that’s exactly why I wanted one. It’s also why I was so surprised to learn the Phantom is going all electric…
Not to be hip, trendy, or green — and certainly not to save on gas costs for their owners…
As a spokesman explained to me, it’s because “the V12 petrol engine can’t be around forever.”
When Time Magazine broke the story on the new electric Phantom, it added: “The day will come, too, when gasoline becomes a scarce to nonexistent commodity.”
A Step Ahead
You see what’s going on here?
A company that exclusively caters to high-net-worth individuals is preparing its clientele for the end of oil (and the end of the internal combustion engine) as we know it.
Allow me to expound…
We’re not talking about a Civic or Fusion hybrid here. The reasons for buying those cars are much different, with marketing aimed more toward environmentalism, climate change, and high gas prices.
The impetus behind an electric Rolls is different. It’s about foresight. It’s about remaining elite.
In the Phantom’s native city of London, cars are already charged $16 per day to enter downtown areas. And it’s generally assumed those fees will be raised before cars are banned downtown altogether. This is where Rolls-Royce diverges…
The automaker isn’t making an all-electric model to help reduce congestion in Westminster, or to help penny-wise commuters save a small percentage on the toll by driving a cleaner car.
No. Rolls-Royce is making an all-electric car so its well-off and boastful owners can still park it outside swanky Soho clubs long after gas engines are banned in bustling boroughs.
It’s a fine distinction, but one certainly worth making.
Looking Out for Number One
This is all part of a broader point I’ve been trying to make for some time now. Namely, that you should stop worrying about and participating in trivialities and instead focus on yourself and what makes you happy.
I see more and more people trending the opposite direction. You can tell by the interest generated by things like Casey Anthony and News of the World and how many millions the latest blockbuster pulled in.
You know what I was doing while the herd rushed out to see Transformers and Harry Potter and Horrible Bosses this weekend? I was plotting to sell my long silver position for easy gains on Monday morning. And I did just that when the crowd came running to safety.
But I digress.
The real point here is to take in everything that’s going on around you. But just take it in — don’t get ingrained in it, don’t let it consume you…
Do what I do: Take all that information, all those headlines, all those search trends, all that herd behavior — even all those Facebook statuses — and distill them down into ideas you can put to work for you.
Take the debt ceiling, for example.
It’s easy to take sides, to say “Look what that damn Obama’s doing now,” or “Can you believe the GOP?” But that does absolutely nothing to further your goals, whatever they are.
Instead, I looked at the bigger picture and decided which investment vehicle would appreciate most as a result of U.S. debt woes. And the clear answer was silver prices.
You need not get involved in the fray.
This goes against your guttural reaction, I know. We all think our opinion is the correct opinion, and we want to share it. But your opinion doesn’t move the market.
It’s much better to take everything into account and bet on the most likely outcome.
That’s how you get wealthy. If you try to change the outcome, you only get gray hair.
Rolls-Royce is doing this perfectly. It’s not saying a gas tax is right or wrong. It’s not saying an all-electric car will help you save the planet.
It’s simply accounting for all external factors and doing what’s best for business.
More of us should do the same.
Call it like you see it,