The name Rolls-Royce is synonymous with success and opulence, and invoking it suggests you're shopping for the ultimate in comfort and status. Even as the entry point to the British marque's lineup, the new Rolls-Royce Ghost is one step above every luxury sedan in the market. Sure, there's competition from the Bentley Flying Spur for sheer lavishness, and the Mercedes-Maybach S exists with the option to make up to 621 horsepower, but the Ghost isn't really about raw power. It's about the aura, the Spirit of Ecstasy, and the pervading tranquility in the cabin. Still, the 6.75-liter V12 in the Ghost makes 563 horsepower and 627 lb-ft of torque, so it can get you to your private jet quickly if necessary. And if the standard opulence and power aren't enough for you, the Ghost Extended offers 6.7 inches more legroom, and the Black Badge version gets 592 hp. If you have upwards of $348k to spend, all you have to do is commission it in your favorite color.
Rolls-Royce hasn't made any major changes to the Ghost for 2023, and it carries over with the opulence we're accustomed to, despite this being the entry-level Roller in the stable. The Black Badge and Ghost Extended round out the lineup, the former offering more power and a tuned suspension, and the latter being stretched for more interior space.
The price of the 2023 Rolls-Royce Ghost varies greatly between models, and since these cars get personally customized to the nth degree, the total cost will differ from buyer to buyer. The MSRP for the new Rolls-Royce Ghost starts at $348,500 for the base model, while opting for the Extended version pushes the price to at least $396,000. The Black Badge specification adds a hefty amount to the base model's sticker price, so expect to pay upwards of $406,500. Buyers in the USA need to factor in a destination charge of $2,750 and a gas guzzler tax of $2,600.
If you're shopping in this segment, it's unlikely that you're worried about budget. Still, the base model offers a lot for what it costs, and it is the cheapest in the range. If you want the most in terms of luxury, the Ghost Extended is the ultimate and can be outfitted with lavish extras to give you a truly upper-crust experience. Those who want their sublime cruiser to be more menacing must go for the Black Badge.
The interior of the Ghost epitomizes old-school charm and comfort, and the Ghost Extended has 6.7 inches of additional legroom for rear-seat passengers.
Technically, the Ghost is all about the interior. No one buys a Rolls-Royce for how it looks (you can be honest), and since it's certainly not a performance-oriented speedster, the whole point of this car is to create a plush cabin to cocoon passengers in. There's space for five in the regular Ghost, but you can opt for the Extended version that rides on a longer wheelbase to make even more space in the back seat. In this case, it comes with just two perches in the back.
Despite the Ghost embodying old-world charm, the interior is a suitably modern and tech-rich place, with all the necessary features and conveniences to underline its brief to pamper occupants. The dashboard is a curious mix of old and new, and won't be to everyone's taste, but there is no faulting the sheer quality of every component.
The standard Ghost is relatively spacious and comfortable, with enough room for even the tallest passengers. Two seating configurations are available in the back: a 'lounge seat' for three passengers across or the 'immersive seating' option for just two. The latter is more appropriate for the Ghost; without it, rear outboard passengers are pressed up against the doors when squeezing a third body in the back.
Despite this being the baby Roller, we'd want to be seated in the back with a chauffeur up front and the rear armrest and champagne cooler optioned on. But if you plan to be driven around, the Ghost Extended is perfect. There is 6.7 inches more space, with oodles of rear legroom to truly capitalize on the executive luxury vibe.
There's a generous trunk with 17.7 cubic feet of space for your luggage, regardless of whether you've gone with the standard Ghost or the Extended variant. For anything more than that, you'll have to send Jeeves with a separate car because folding down the rear seats would be sacrilege even if it were possible.
As far as small item storage goes, there are door pockets and cupholders available, and a bin under the center armrest. The rear center console, when equipped, can chill a bottle of Moet and hold two crystal flutes. Picnic tables are available, too.
|Rolls-Royce Ghost||Mercedes-Maybach S||Bentley Flying Spur|
|5 Seater||5 Seater||5 Seater|
|40.9 in. front|
39.1 in. rear
|39.4 in. front|
38.1 in. rear
|37.4 in. front |
37 in. rear
|41.6 in. front|
41.9 in. rear
49.1 in. rear
|41.9 in. front |
42.9 in. rear
|17.7 ft³||12.3-12.9 ft³||14.8 ft³|
Customizing the interior of your Ghost may take a while; the finest leather can be had in almost any color you want, and you can pick up to three colors and personally decide which parts of the seats you want wrapped in your favorite hue. The same hide covers the door panels and, like the seat surfaces, can be accented with contrast stitching and piping. You can even tick the box for a color-keyed trunk lining to ensure it all melds together well.
Interior trim comprises a selection of high gloss veneers like Dark Amber, Walnut Burr, or Piano Black, to name a few, or you can browse through a selection of Open Pore veneers for a more old-school look. The Ghost also gets an illuminated fascia that is backlit by pinpricks of LED lights to resemble a starry sky - this goes particularly well with the Shooting Star Headliner. On Black Badge models, the iconic Lemniscate Infinity symbol is backlit on the fascia, and the cabin is trimmed in model-specific Technical Fiber embellishments.
The opulence doesn't end with the plush leather, and lambswool floor mats in contrasting colors can be optioned on, and you can pick a unique color for the seatbelts if you wish.
Almost everything you can think of is available to enhance comfort in the Ghost, although some of these will be added-cost options. Standard features include a heated steering wheel, remote keyless entry, push-button start, dual-zone climate control with a separate system in the rear, power 'Effortless' doors, an air filtration system, and heated front seats. Ventilated seats with a massage function are also available front and rear, and you can have privacy glass and curtains at the back if you're trying to evade the paparazzi.
The infotainment setup isn't ultra-modern by any standards, but it's easy to use and assumes that if you are going to be stuck in a Ghost for extended periods of time, it'll be at the back, where you've likely equipped the optional rear-seat theatre system. In any event, the standard setup includes wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, but there's no dash-monopolizing curved display here. Instead, you get a standard 12.3-inch touchscreen, an old-school CD player, a USB port, SiriusXM, integrated navigation, and an 18-speaker sound system.
|Ghost||Ghost Black Badge||Ghost Extended|
|Heated front seats|
|Dual-zone climate control with separate rear system|
|Shooting Star headliner|
It may look unassuming, but the Rolls-Royce Ghost is powerful, quick, and confident in performance. The Ghost Black Badge get even more power.
Although we stated that Rolls-Royce isn't about performance, that doesn't mean it's short on power. Nothing motivated by a 6.75-liter V12 engine can be anything other than powerful, and with 563 hp and 627lb-ft on tap in the base model, you can get to 60 mph in just 4.6 seconds. An eight-speed automatic transmission lays down the power. With a curb weight of over 5,600 lbs and an all-wheel-drive setup, that's relatively impressive, even though there are lesser sedans that make more power and dispatch the benchmark sprint quicker. Still, the Ghost gets up to speed without any fuss - you may not even feel the immense power build while you're cosseted in the back. You get a special engine sound for the Rolls-Royce Ghost that heralds the menacing designation's increase in power, though.
With up to 592 hp and 664 lb-ft, the Black Badge is the most powerful model in the range and will shave a tenth off the Rolls-Royce Ghost's 0-60 mph sprint time. All that torque is made available from as low as 1,700 rpm to ensure you're hurtling off the line, aided by rapid gearshifts that have been tweaked specially for this model. Black Badge models also get high-temperature brake caliper paint to ensure there's nothing hindering you from stopping the missile when it's needed. Finally, Black Badge Ghosts also have unique suspension settings that are said to provide a sportier feel from behind the wheel when pushing on.
Surprisingly, neither the Ghost Extended nor the Black Badge take a gas mileage penalty for their heftier size or bump in power. All Ghost models are rated at 12/19/14 mpg on the city/highway/combined cycles, according to the EPA.
The 2023 Ghost has a fuel tank capacity of 19.8 gallons, which should make for a range of around 275 miles when driven politely.
|6.7L Twin-Turbo V12 Gas|
|6.7L Twin-Turbo V12 Gas |
|563 hp||591 hp|
|155 mph||155 mph|
|12 / 19 / 14 mpg||12 / 19 / 14 mpg|
|4.6 seconds||4.5 seconds|
The most technologically-advanced Rolls-Royce Ghost, yet.
Neither the NHTSA nor the IIHS is going to crash test a car with this pedigree, so there is no official safety review for the Rolls-Royce Ghost. But with a host of safety tech as standard, occupants can rest assured they will arrive at their destination safe and sound.
The automaker proudly notes the Ghost is the most tech-forward Roller in history, and to that end, it comes fully loaded with driver assists. Active cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, forward and rear collision detection with automatic braking, lane-keep assist, lane-departure warning, front/rear parking sensors, blind-spot detection, a head-up display, and a 360-degree camera system are all standard.
|Ghost||Ghost Black Badge||Ghost Extended|
|Adaptive cruise control|
|Front and rear collision detection|
|Lane keep assist and lane-departure warning|
NHTSA safety ratings are not available at this time.
The last time a Rolls-Royce Ghost was recalled was in 2021, and the sole issue listed pertains to a passenger seat belt malfunction. The latest models are recall-free at the time of writing.
The Rolls-Royce pedigree brings high reliability expectations to the Ghost lineup, considering such beautiful vehicles are hand-built and thoroughly checked before delivery to the buyer. Each new Rolls-Royce Ghost sedan is sold with a four-year/unlimited-mile maintenance plan. The standard warranty for the 2023 Rolls-Royce Ghost covers the same period.
Beauty is indeed in the eye of the beholder, and while the Rolls-Royce Ghost is far from beautiful in our opinion, it's not an unpleasant car to look at. The pervading sense of "old-world charm" remains even with modern tweaks to the front end, and it works in this application because the iconic look of a Roller is part of what sells the package. You want people to notice you, and the Pantheon grille will get you that. That grille is subtly illuminated and can be optionally extended for a more prominent presence. The Spirit of Ecstasy on the hood can be gold plated or uplit if you so desire, and you can select a Rhodium silver hood to make even more of a statement.
As the name implies, Black Badge models get dark exterior accents to give them a more menacing look. Wheel sizes range from 19-inch through to 21-inch items, which are model-specific on the Black Badge and feature a self-leveling hubcap to ensure the RR logo remains upright at all times. Of course, the rear-opening doors remain a party trick, and we're not even ashamed that we love it.
You'd have to be certifiable to think you can answer this in the negative; any Roller is good by default because it encompasses a spirit of excellence as the ultimate in automotive class. That being said, is the 2023 Rolls-Royce Ghost a good sedan to drive daily? It's comfortable, powerful, and a delight to pilot, but it's heavy on gas and leaves a sizable footprint. Whether the baby Roller works for you depends on your lifestyle and budget, and if you can live with those few gripes, the answer is yes. It's an excellent car that meets all the criteria set out for a vehicle in a niche segment that only a few will ever be able to criticize.
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