As a “gateway to the brand” model, the Rolls-Royce Ghost
sedan has managed to nearly double sales for Rolls-Royce worldwide. While less expensive than its Phantom sibling, the Ghost is smaller in size, more rewarding to drive (as opposed to “be driven in”) and perhaps even more contemporary in its execution.
Adding to the Ghost’s entertainment value is a twin-turbo, 6.6-liter V-12 that produces 563 horsepower and 575 pound-feet of torque. That’s substantially more power than the larger (and pricier) Rolls-Royce Phantom, and it enables the Ghost to sprint from 0-60 mph in just 4.8 seconds on its way to an electronically-governed top speed of 155 mph, rivaling the performance of some legitimate sport sedans.
While fuel economy is improved compared to the larger and heavier Phantom, it’s still not a selling point for the Ghost. The EPA gives the car a fuel economy rating of 13 mpg city and 20 mpg highway, due in part to the use of an eight-speed automatic transmission instead of the six-speed found in the Phantom.
With underpinning borrowed from BMW’s 7-Series sedan, the Ghost handles better than a car of its mass should. A multi-link aluminum suspension employs air springs, active anti-roll and chassis stabilization to ensure that the Ghost delivers both a smooth ride and surprising agility when the going gets twisty. Despite the car’s capabilities, it’s first and foremost a Rolls-Royce, so ride comfort is outstanding.
Inside, the Ghost gets the expected Rolls-Royce
attention to detail, including hand-stitched leather upholstery and trim made from select hardwoods and polished metal. For 2012, the Ghost will come in a long-wheelbase version
, just in case you prefer to leave the driving duties to others on your staff.
Like the Phantom, the Ghost is part of Rolls-Royce’s bespoke customization program. If the craftsmen at the Goodwood plant can figure out how to accommodate your request for customization, they will - at a price. While the bespoke participation rate for Ghost buyers isn’t quite as high as with Phantom buyers, it’s still significant, meaning that customers want a Rolls-Royce that tailored to them like a fine suit.
The Ghost also offers buyers safety features like lane departure warning and night vision assist that aren’t available on Phantom models, which may be reason enough to consider the Ghost over its larger sibling. Ghost models start from around $250,000, but prices climb quickly as options are added on.
For a complete look at the 2012 Rolls-Royce Ghost, see our comprehensive model review on The Car Connection