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The Rolls-Royce Ghost offers astounding versatility and luxury, despite being the smallest of the marque's four-door offerings.

16 Apr 2021


If it's the final word in automotive luxury you're looking for, but find both the Cullinan or the Phantom a little too imposing, you'll do well to note that Rolls-Royce now offers its esteemed clients a new, more discreet option.

Enter the new Rolls-Royce Ghost.

Restrained style

The discreet exterior design of the Ghost does well to mask its generous dimensions
And new it is indeed. Rolls-Royce states that only two components that have been carried over from the previous car: The Spirit of Ecstasy, and the famous in-door umbrellas.

So, there's a lot to cover here. The first thing you'll notice is that this car sports a new design philosophy from Rolls-Royce.

Described by the firm itself as 'Post Opulence', it reflects the changing way in which success is expressed for the firm's clients.

Those coach doors don't just close, but also open electronically on this new model
I'm presuming flaunting success in a bold and brash manner must no longer be the fashion for the super wealthy since the new car now bears a less formal and more discreet exterior, ditching the neo-classical inspirations of its predecessor for something just more rounded at the edges, a little sleeker, and a bit more casual.

And to my eyes the new tailoring works well, making the car just nearly nondescript enough to allow you to drive it around without catching too much attention from passersby, in spite of its massive dimensions.

There's also a good touch of modernity with just the right degree of aggressiveness about it as well that's rather pleasing to the eyes.

Gilded cabin

152 LEDs rest behind the Illuminated Fascia, all colour-matched to the cabin's clock and instrument dial lighting
The Ghost may be the smallest of Rolls-Royce's four-door offerings but it still rests at a height that makes ingress and egress just a simple matter of stepping in, rather than climbing up or falling into.

A quick twist of the body will see you easily settling into the sumptuous chairs, and once here, you'll find everything richly cushioned and upholstered. A few items that particularly managed to astonish include the velvety soft pillows on the rear headrests, and the thick carpeting that sits beneath your feet.

But enough of stating the obvious.

Give your chauffeur directions to your next destination without uttering a word via the infotainment system
Opt for this Extended variant and you'll get an additional 170mm of wheelbase to play with, all poured into the section immediately aft of the B-pillar for the benefit of rear passengers.

This means you get enough knee room to get in and out of the car without ever needing to retract the picnic tables, but the downside to all that space is that the touchscreens hidden behind them become a bit of a stretch to poke. You'll need to resort to the controls within the centre console instead.

The entertainment system at the rear utilises a straightforward user interface that doesn't require much familiarisation, and offers you the option to set a destination in the navigation system for the driver ahead to accept, so last minute destination changes don't even have to be verbally issued to your chauffeur.

Isolated drive

Extended variant adds 170mm of length to the car's wheelbase so you get more than generous levels of legroom at the rear
But should you opt to take the wheel of the Ghost yourself you'll find it a rather pleasing machine to pilot as well.

The steering column-mounted gear selector and steering wheel are uncannily light for a car of this size, but the upshot is that making quick three-point turns on narrow streets is eased. Driving the Ghost should always be effortless after all.

The 6.75-litre twin-turbocharged engine makes quick work of the car's 2,530kg, thanks to its 563bhp and, more pertinently, 850Nm of torque from just 1,600rpm.

But it's not so much the sheer pace with which it can hustle the car's new aluminium spaceframe that impresses. But rather, the way it goes about doing it.

563bhp twin-turbocharged V12 is creamy smooth all through the rev range
Always creamy smooth, the drivetrain never lets you notice its inner workings, thanks to power delivery that is linear and gear changes that are completely undetectable.

Road and wind noise are always suppressed, and only a faint whisper of the engine thrum and the occasional bump from the suspension at work permeate the cabin. Rolls-Royce states that complete silence could have been accomplished, but this goal was abandoned after initial tests found that many found it rather disorientating.

But should you find that V12 purr too distracting, there's always the option to turn up the bespoke 1,300W, 18-speaker sound system, which offers stunning clarity.

Expect nothing but supreme quiet levels in the Ghost, regardless of how fast you're going
This new Ghost also sports a new Planar Suspension System, which adds dampers to the upper wishbones of the suspension system in a bid to better iron out small-frequency vibrations. That 'Magic Carpet' ride has now been enhanced, with small road imperfections barely perceivable and large bumps on the road easily ironed over.

Hit a few bumps in successive order at just the right speed and the damping can feel challenged, but you really have to be paying attention to notice.

Astounding ability

At $1,418,888 before options (as of 9 April 2021), this Ghost Extended is asking for a steeper starting price than the more ostentatious Cullinan. But if you're not planning to drive your Roller through a bog anytime soon, the new Ghost will offer up plenty of on-road stability and serenity, plus the ability to arrive anywhere in a relatively nondescript fashion thanks to its restrained exterior.

If you're the sort that is wealthy enough to afford that asking price, I cannot imagine there can be a lot that is more valuable than the added privacy that this new Ghost can offer. Now that is truly go-anywhere ability.

Car Information

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Rolls-Royce Ghost 6.75 V12 Extended (A)
Rate it

Price

: $1,418,888

Engine Type

:

V12 Twin-Turbocharged

Engine Cap

:

6749cc

Horsepower

:

420kW (563 bhp) / 5000 rpm

Torque

:

850 Nm / 1600 rpm

Transmission

:

8-speed (A)

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)

:

4.8sec

Top Speed

:

250km/h

Fuel consumption

:

unknown

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