There is nothing quite like spending an afternoon with a ghost. Especially if itís the new Rolls-Royce Ghost. Thanks to Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Dallas and Rolls-Royce I recently enjoyed a few hours in the luxurious driverís seat of one of the rare Ghostís making its way around the U.S. for its launch. A masterpiece in exquisite craftsmanship, design, luxury and performance, itís truly a triumph for the brand.
The new 2021 Ghost is an extremely important launch for the brand - it is after all the best-selling Rolls-Royce in the companyís 116-year history. After spending an afternoon behind the 2021, I can understand why. The rest of the world melts away when youíre enveloped in its confines. In fact, this is only the second-generation since its arrival ten years ago. Rolls says the new Ghost, which was designed, crafted and engineered from the ground up, is the direct result of listening to what its clients want. To that end, itís the first vehicle designed with Rolls-Royceís new ďPost OpulenceĒ minimalist design. Rolls-Royce went with a beautiful but subtle, less is more attitude. Rolls-Royce describes it as ďbeauty with restraint.Ē
There are some other notable design firsts with the new Ghost. Perhaps the most defining design characteristic is that the hood ornament rises from the bonnet itself - for the first time ever - rather than the grille as with every Rolls before it. It also features a gorgeous optional illuminated 20-LED downlit Pantheon grille. Inside, I love the new illuminated fascia extending across the passenger side of the dash, featuring the GHOST nameplate surrounded by LED lights that make up more than 850 stars.
You will, of course, find the brandís hallmark features as well, including floating wheel caps, its coach doors and now, for the first time on a Ghost, the doors now open as well as close electronically. Umbrellas are still tucked inside the rear doors. Inside, youíre still treated to the starlight headliner. The gleaming metal hardware exudes sophistication inside while beautiful open-pore wood, minus any embellished veneer, adds both simplicity and texture. Luxuriously soft leather seats are impeccably stitched minus a busy quilted pattern. The cabin is luxurious without being over the top, presenting a sense of calm for all who ride in its confines.
There is also more of an emphasis on the driver. The new Ghost is not meant to be just a chauffeur experience. Rolls-Royce knows that many of its owners here in the U.S. and in Europe are driving the Ghost themselves.
Rolls also calls the new Ghost its most technology advanced vehicle ever. Laser headlights, self-parking and a host of driver assist technology. Itís full of connected tech, including wireless charging and four USB-C ports. The new Bespoke audio system I experienced is absolutely incredible.
The back seat is decked out with amenities like infotainment screens that drop down from the seat backs, and open-pore wood tray tables. If you decide to take it on a road trip - thereís more room for luggage with 10-percent more trunk space.
The Ghost also introduces a new Microenvironment Purification System. The enhanced air filtration system has new sensors that detect air quality and if they detect unacceptable levels of airborne contaminants, the system will automatically switch fresh air intakes to Recirculation Mode.
The Ghost is built on a new platform - the same rigid aluminum architecture that underpins the Cullinan and Phantom. It also now features all-wheel drive and all-wheel steering. Another incredibly important feature of the
new Ghost is that it introduces the brandís new Planar Suspension system. A decade in the making, it enhances the Rolls-Royce double-wishbone suspensionís Magic Carpet ride to heights thatís hard to describe. The ride is the smoothest Iíve experienced in a vehicle, ever. The system isolates and absorbs wheel vibration and quietens a ride that takes the term Magic Carpet Ride to new levels. Smooth doesnít begin to describe it. Itís like none Iíve experienced before.
Of course the Ghost has a powertrain worthy of sitting beneath the Spirit of Ecstacy. A next-gen 6.75-liter V12 delivers 563-horsepower providing exceptional power and confidence on the road-- especially given the Ghost isnít exactly light. It weighs in at 5,700 pounds.
The new Ghost is expected to start from around the $332,500 mark. It just started arriving in showrooms in the UK this week. (By the way it also comes in an extended version.) Stay tuned for its arrival here in the US.A Special thanks to Rolls Royce and Rolls Royce Motor Cars Dallas owned by the Avondale Group, along with Aardvark Communications for the opportunity to experience the new Ghost.