2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost First Look Review: Opulence Returns

First Look / 3 Comments

And it still has V12 power.

While its larger sibling, the Phantom, can trace its name and roots back to 1925, the Rolls-Royce Ghost first appeared in 2009. During its relatively short lifespan, the Ghost has made a major impact in the ultra-luxury auto market where customers from across the globe have embraced its opulence.

Enter the all-new 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost. Completely redesigned from the ground-up, the new Ghost now shares an aluminum spaceframe with the latest generation Phantom sedan and Cullinan SUV. The move away from a BMW platform is significant because the Ghost is no longer considered as a more luxurious 7 Series. It has secured its own identity. Thanks to the outgoing model's decade-long presence, the UK-based automaker has been able to gather vital intelligence regarding what Ghost customers want. Aside from world-class design, engineering, and craftsmanship, owners desired a more modest and minimalist expression of the brand. And that's exactly what's been delivered.

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Evolved Minimalist Luxury

Rolls-Royce describes the Ghost's design language as "Post Opulence," meaning it has a more minimalist aesthetic. Its front end features 20 LED lights underneath the top of the radiator grille while the overall look is all about reduction by way of uninterrupted lines. The rectangular-shaped LED and laser headlights have a cleaner appearance with an illumination range of nearly 2,000 feet.

The famous Spirit of Ecstasy emblem is no longer surrounded by panel lines. Instead, it stands on its own "lake" at the front of the hood. As for the flanks, a single straight stroke emphasizes the Ghost's length while a lower "waft line" is inspired by boat design. Riding on a new spaceframe architecture with aluminum construction, the new Ghost is 3.5 inches longer than its predecessor and 1.2 inches wider.

The glasshouse features two equally-sized front and rear windows, hinting at the vehicle being both a driver's car and something to be chauffeured around in. The rear end has a nice tapered effect, accompanied by almost square-shaped light clusters.

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Exquisite Interior Dwellings

Rolls-Royce has a century's worth of experience crafting the finest vehicle interiors money can buy. The new Ghost doesn't disappoint. The brand's stunning Starlight Headliner returns while a new illuminated dashboard, located on the passenger side, required two years and over 10,000 hours to perfect. Ghost owners will also enjoy powered doors that can be opened and closed with the simple push of a button. There are G-force sensors that guarantee incline parking will not affect the doors' functionality.

The rest of the interior is a sight to behold. Owners will find optional open-pore wood finish and luscious leather upholstery and trim. Speaking of which, a total of 20 half hides are necessary for each Ghost cabin. Rear seat passengers - those who love to be chauffeured - will enjoy a total of 41.9 inches of legroom.

An 18-speaker Bespoke Audio system is standard while over 220 pounds of sound-deadening materials were used in order for the Ghost's interior to be one of the most silent in the world.

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Raw Power Meets Ultimate Refinement

Those who thought the V12 engine is dead are wrong. Under the Ghost's hood lies, once again, a 6.75-liter twin-turbocharged V12 with 563 horsepower and 627 lb-ft of torque, very similar figures to that of the outgoing model. The engine is located behind the front axle which helps to achieve a perfect 50/50 weight distribution. An eight-speed automatic Satellite Aided Transmission that utilizes GPS data for ideal gear selections is standard.

This time, however, the Ghost gains both all-wheel drive and all-wheel steering for an improved ride for drivers and passengers alike. A redesigned Planar Suspension System enhances the already stellar Magic Carpet Ride suspension system. The Ghost also features a world-first Upper Wishbone Damper unit above the front suspension for even more ride stability. The brand's Flagbearer system will continue to scan the road ahead and react proactively to any sort of surface changes. Rolls-Royce claims the new Ghost can sprint from 0-60 mph in just 4.6 seconds and has a top speed, likely electronically limited, of 155 mph.

Some standard safety and driver-assist features include lane departure warning, WiFi hotspot, and self-parking.

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Pricing And Competition

Official pricing for the all-new 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost will begin at $332,500, though customers will end up spending much more than this thanks to seemingly endless customization and other bespoke options. An on-sale date has not been announced, though orders are likely to begin very soon.

The competition in this ultra-exclusive segment is quite limited. The Ghost's most notable competitor will be, once again, the Bentley Flying Spur. Bentley, of course, is owned by the Volkswagen Group and it too has an extremely loyal customer base. What will be interesting to see is whether or not the new Ghost sedan will be able to maintain its relevance in a world increasingly being dominated by SUVs. It's possible the Rolls-Royce Cullinan could become the Ghost's unwanted internal rival.

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