Slated for release this winter, the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost brings with it much from the luxury maker’s long history of excellence and grandeur. Yet, this rendition promises to be the cleverest Rolls-Royce progeny thus far.
Rolls-Royce’s Architecture of Luxury aluminum chassis and a severely quiet 12-cylinder engine are all par for the course, really. But when coupled with modernity’s latest technologies? Well, that’s a specter worth investigating. It’s the spirit of ecstasy indeed.
Those familiar with the outgoing model will see that much under the hood remains the same. And why shouldn’t it be? If the 6.75-liter, twin-turbo V-12 engine isn’t broken, don’t you dare fix it. From its precision-engineered bay, the 12-cylinder behemoth churns out 563 hp and 627 lb-ft of torque. That’s a near-unwieldy amount of verve pulsing the powertrain and more than enough to glide the Ghost’s 2.85-ton aluminum assembly from 0 to 60 in 4.6 seconds.
The eight-speed automatic transmission manages all the shifting, which dovetails nicely with the grand touring machine’s all-wheel-steering and 50/50 weight distribution.
Regarding interior specifications, Rolls makes it abundantly clear that customization of the Ghost means that the sky is your limit — well, or your bank account. Whichever comes first. So, we’ll stick to describing the standard options for the sake of brevity (and dignity).
Open the classic Rolls-Royce coach-style doors (now with gesture control) and enter the totally opulent cabin. Lush leather upholstery with painfully acute contrast piping; densely piled carpet lining; a cabin-wide overhead starfield that glimmers ephemerally and would be ostentatious were it not so spellbinding.
Rolls likes to call their styling “post-opulent,” but little about this reimagination strikes us as a Ghost of opulence past. In fact, its opulence seems quite grounded in modernity.
Rolls-Royce clearly put some thought into driver and pedestrian safety — heeding its call to a great power with great responsibility. From the 600-meter range laser headlights to park distance control, safety and driver-assistance aren’t afterthoughts with the Ghost. Automated emergency braking with optical pedestrian detection, lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assistance, responsive road-scanning optics, adaptive cruise control, and semi-autonomous driving mode all come standard in the 2021 Ghost, too.
Spirit of Ecstasy: The 2021 RR Ghost
That’s right, semi-autonomous driving mode, not fully-autonomous. Semi. After all, you’d be silly to totally opt out of revving a machine with the Ghost’s amperage and éclat. It’s made to be engaged. This isn’t some glorified, electric cross-town cradle, crafted to bathe you in the low hum of a noncontroversial podcast. This is a razor-edge beacon that’s waited all day to rouse you from antipathy with an honest-to-asphalt, 12-cylinder, purring-engine verve.
And while the entry-level Rolls is nothing if not elusive – $332,500 gets you the standard options – for the luckily entitled few, giving up this Ghost won’t be easy.