If your default setting is to jump automatically into the back seat, you’re making a serious mistake. I had not been in a Rolls Royce for a good long time, and the cars way back then seemed out of touch, stodgy, old-fashioned.
2013 RR GHOST
But it had been a while and when RR kindly offered me a behind the wheel experience, well, who am I to turn down Rolls Royce. Riding shotgun was Oleg, rep from RR North America, about as unpretentious a guy as you’ll meet, soft-spoken but outgoing, with an attitude that said that he would let the car do the talking. It did… Rolls was always famous for describing the horsepower of their cars as…. “Adequate”, feeling it unnecessary, and perhaps a little bourgeois, to address the numbers. But times change, and the Ghost is powered by a 6.6-liter twin-turbo V-12 engine that delivers a total of 563 horsepower and 575 pound-feet of torque, sprints from 0 to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds and tops out an electronically limited 155 mph. (too bad because I believe the average Ghost owner badly wants to pull up behind some really fast machines and scare the crap out of them when that big silhouette glides by on the left).
2013 RR GHOST
RR Ghost Driving impressions:
If you lack self-confidence, skip this car. I wanted to wave. Pedestrians DID wave, and it’s fun to have them think you simply must know Will and Kate. Inside is what you would expect from RR, the interior now modern though connected to its past, with nary a stitch out of place, and you wonder how much it costs to get skilled people to hand-sew half a dozen cows together with such precision. Not a bit of plastic on the dash, the knobs and switches must have heft, with a beautifully integrated dash and navigation system. Step on the gas and the driver is instantly rewarded with a quiet shove that still glides but now with real urgency. Of course, its silhouette means the Ghost isn’t going to corner like a GT3, but it wraps speed, prestige, and usability together into a package only dreamed of by other manufacturers.
So who buys a RR Ghost?
There is, Oleg explained, a new breed in town, successful young people ages 30-40 that use the Ghost as their SUV or mini-van, and that has got to warm the cockles of the folks back in Goodwood, England. He also mentioned it’s routine to have a Ghost roll into service, sporting a baby seat in the back. Or having service techs dig out McDonald’s wrappers from under the seats. Whatever day you’ve had, closing the door on this car is designed to put all of your troubles behind. And one last benefit of this car is the knowledge that when you pull up anywhere, the guys parking cars are going to move everything else out of the way to park you up front. Just like bowing when you meet the Queen, no one is going to mind… It’s now a very different car and you at least owe yourself a drive. Yes, just look up your local Rolls dealer and tell him you want to drive a Ghost. And bring the baby seat just for size. Dave