Rolls-Royce Motor Cars PressClub · Article.
ROLLS-ROYCE GHOST: A SYMBOL OF ENDLESS PURE EXPRESSION
14.12.2023 Press Kit
This Press Kit provides an overview of the current Ghost model family, its design philosophy and position within the Rolls-Royce product portfolio. The original launch release for Ghost is available on PressClub, where you can also find information about previous generations, variants and models, including Ghost Extended and Black Badge Ghost.
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This Press Kit provides an overview of the current Ghost model
family, its design philosophy and position within the Rolls-Royce
product portfolio. The original launch release for
is available on PressClub, where you can also find
information about previous generations, variants and models,
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars launched the first Ghost in 2009 at the Frankfurt Motor Show. More compact than the marque’s pinnacle product, Phantom, it was created for a new group of clients who desired a more modest, minimalist expression of Rolls-Royce perfection in design, engineering and craftsmanship. The Ghost Extended variant followed in 2011. An updated Series II Ghost was unveiled at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show, with the first Black Badge Ghost making its debut two years later.
Over the course of its 10-year lifecycle, the first-generation Ghost became the most successful product in the company’s history, enabling Rolls-Royce to scale up production, invest in its capabilities and establish itself as a truly global luxury brand. Production ended in 2019, an event commemorated in the Ghost Zenith Collection.
The present Ghost, built on the same Architecture of Luxury spaceframe as Phantom, Cullinan and Spectre, was launched in 2020: the line-up also includes Ghost Extended and Black Badge Ghost, launched in 2021.
GHOST PHILOSOPHY AND POSITIONING
Ghost is a study in reduction, minimalism and simplicity. Its purity provides the ideal blank canvas for Bespoke commissions, with clients able to exercise their ambitious creativity and express their personal tastes almost entirely free of technical and aesthetic constraints.
That purity presents possibility. It creates potential as boundless as the owner’s imagination, emboldening them to bring colour, energy and vibrancy to their commission and to allow beautiful materials, expert craftsmanship and exquisite details speak for themselves, subtle and unadorned.
A NEW APPROACH TO LUXURY
Ghost’s design reflects a marked shift in clients’ attitudes to luxury that has occurred since its first incarnation. Today’s luxury consumers consciously reject extravagance and ostentation: their tastes are defined by reduction, simplicity and substance, and the intelligent, considered selection and unobtrusive application of exceptional materials and craftsmanship. Every element of Ghost therefore has relevance, purpose and integrity. This philosophy is the antithesis of ‘premium mediocrity’, a term coined by the fashion industry for otherwise unremarkable products that rely on contrivance, superficial details and meaningless aesthetic artifice to create an illusion of luxury.
Ghost is also designed for a younger client cohort, often self-made and invariably self-confident and self-reliant, who tend to be self-drivers by default, and thus take a keen interest in their motor car’s driving experience and dynamics.
THE CURRENT GHOST MODEL
Ghost is perfect in its simplicity; but creating this purity of expression was one of the marque’s greatest-ever technical challenges. It incorporates state-of-the-art equipment and functions including:
- LED and laser headlights with more than 600m of illuminated range, plus vision assist
- Alertness assistant
- Four-camera system with panoramic view, all-round visibility and helicopter view
- Active cruise control
- Collision, cross-traffic, lane departure and lane change warnings
- Industry-leading 7x3 high-resolution head-up display (HUD)
- On-board Wi-Fi hotspot
- Self-park system
- Bespoke navigation and entertainment systems.
Proprietary Architecture of Luxury
Ghost is built on the marque’s proprietary Architecture of Luxury spaceframe, as used in its flagship Phantom, Cullinan SUV and all-electric Spectre. The aluminium spaceframe’s flexibility and scalability creates an acoustically superior, highly rigid and dynamic platform, based around four fixed points, one at each corner of the motor car. The moveable aluminium bulkhead, floor, crossmembers and sill panels are positioned specifically to make Ghost as enjoyable to drive as it is to be driven in. Pushing two of the cast suspension mounting assemblies to the very front and placing the 6.75-litre V12 behind the front axle, gives an optimum 50/50 weight distribution.
Ghost has all-wheel drive, all-wheel steering and a Planar Suspension System specifically designed to enhance the marque’s hallmark ‘magic carpet ride’.
Ghost’s metal superstructure is 100% aluminium, rendered as one clean, expansive piece, flowing seamlessly from the A-pillar, over the roof and down to the rear of the motor car. To eliminate shut lines and body seams, four craftspeople hand-weld the body together simultaneously; Ghost is also fitted with 100% aluminium, laser-welded doors. As well as reducing the motor car’s overall weight, aluminium offers a remarkable 40,000Nm/deg stiffness, and a lower acoustic impedance than steel, improving cabin ambience.
6.75-Litre Twin-Turbocharged V12
Ghost’s bespoke V12 engine ensures dynamic performance, delivering 563bhp/420kW and 850Nm/627lb ft of torque, with maximum torque available from 1600rpm – just 600rpm above tick-over. The air intake system incorporates large ports designed to reduce engine noise in the interior.
Planar Suspension System
The Planar Suspension System is the result of 10 collective years of testing and development, creating a sense of ‘flight on land’ never achieved in a motor car before. Created through physical engineering developments, and sophisticated scanning and software technology, it incorporates a world-first Upper Wishbone Damper unit, reserved exclusively for Rolls-Royce and never previously applied in a production motor car. Located above the front suspension assembly, this assists the continuously variable, electronically controlled shock absorbers and self-levelling high-volume air strut assemblies, creating a stable, effortless ride.
The marque’s Flagbearer system uses cameras to read the road ahead and adjust the suspension proactively rather than reactively at up to 100km/h. This allows Ghost to anticipate and react to the most demanding road surfaces. It operates in concert with the Satellite Aided Transmission system, which draws GPS data to pre-select the optimum gear for upcoming corners, all managed by the planar software system.
The five-link rear axle benefits from self-levelling high-volume air suspension technology and rear-wheel steering.
Rolls-Royce clients have enjoyed self-closing doors since the first Goodwood Phantom. In Ghost, clients open the rear door with one pull of the interior handle, then allow it to return to its resting position while they check for potential hazards. They then pull and hold it for full power assistance on opening. Once the door is opened sufficiently, they simply release the handle, which engages a door brake. The door can be closed completely automatically at the push of a button on the exterior handle.
If clients prefer to close the door manually, the operation is power assisted. On-board longitudinal and transverse sensors, as well as G-force sensors fitted to each door, allow the same speed of operation regardless of hill or driveway angles.
Micro-Environment Purification System (MEPS)
Ghost benefits from a Micro-Environment Purification System (MEPS), incorporating a full suite of hardware and software. They include highly sensitive Impurity Detection Sensors that automatically switch fresh air intakes to Recirculation Mode if unacceptable levels of airborne contaminants are present. This channels all cabin air through a nanofleece filter, which is capable of removing nearly all ultra-fine particles from the Rolls-Royce’s micro-environment in less than two minutes.
Ghost applies the marque’s Formula for Serenity, designed to produce a calm, serene and near-noiseless interior environment.
The first element of this formula is the Architecture of Luxury. Its aluminium construction has a higher acoustic impedance than steel, and comprises complex forms, rather than flat, resonant surfaces. The bulkhead and floor sections are double-skinned and filled with composite damping felts to reduce road noise intrusion. In total, Ghost incorporates 100kg of acoustic material in the doors, roof, between the double-glazed windows, inside the tyres and throughout the underpinning architecture.
During development, every component was interrogated and, where necessary, re-engineered to eliminate unacceptable noise. For example, the inside of the air conditioning ducting is polished to reduce wind noise; the diameter of the prop shaft was adjusted and its rigidity increased to improve acoustics.
The development process also revealed that a completely silent interior is actually rather disorienting for occupants. Ghost therefore exhibits a ‘whisper’ – a soft undertone experienced as a single, subtle note. This is achieved by tuning each component so it shares a common resonant frequency. Again, this requires specific engineering solutions, such as damping units in the seat frames, and ports under the rear parcel shelf that allow low-frequency sounds produced in the 507-litre boot cavity at motorway speed to escape.
Ghost is defined by minimalism and purity, underpinned by great substance. Sharp bow lines intersect with an angular light signature, creating an assertive yet beautiful front end. Twenty LEDS set under the top of the radiator grille subtly illuminate the vanes: the backs of the vanes are brushed, making them less reflective and creating a restrained glow effect. The Spirit of Ecstasy is not surrounded by panel lines but rather stands within her own unbroken ‘lake’.
The hand-welded aluminium body appears as one fluid whole, uninterrupted by shut lines, with a single straight stroke in the flanks emphasising the motor car’s length. The lower ‘waft line’ borrows from boat design and uses reflection to lighten the surfacing and create a pure sense of motion. The subtly arched roof line and rear end follow this sense of movement and resolve in a taper. The near-square rear light graphic, an established tenet of contemporary Rolls-Royce design, has a slight forward tilt and appears as an ‘island’ within the painted surface.
In the deliberately neutral upper section, the windows are equally proportioned, balancing Ghost as both a driver-oriented and chauffeur-driven car.
The interior aesthetic pursues the same minimalist principles as the exterior. Free of busy details and superficial adornment, it creates a relaxing refuge and maximises the impact of Bespoke colour personalisation.
Producing an environment defined by reduction, simplicity and elegance is an extremely complex endeavour, since even the very finest materials will, when left unembellished, invite close scrutiny. The leather used in each of Ghost’s 338 individual panels, however small and unobtrusive, is subject to the automotive industry’s most exhaustive quality control checks: the stitching is minimal and forms long, perfectly straight lines, again inviting minute inspection.
Ghost features specially developed wood veneers in open-pore finish,
which showcase the materials in their naked form. Obsidian Ayous is
inspired by the rich mix of colours found in igneous rock, while Dark
Amber introduces subtle glamour with fine aluminium particles
integrated into the dark wood. The wood is left exposed as long,
single-veneer leaves, punctuated only by cold-to-the-touch solid metal
Ghost’s Illuminated Fascia subtly echoes the Starlight Headliner, which itself has become as much a part of Rolls-Royce iconography as the Spirit of Ecstasy, Pantheon Grille and ‘Double R’ monogram.
Developed over two years and more than 10,000 collective hours, the
fascia includes an ethereal glowing Ghost nameplate surrounded by more
than 850 ‘stars’. The illumination comes from 152 LEDs mounted above
and beneath the fascia, each meticulously colour-matched to the clock
and instrument dial lighting. The Ghost wordmark is lit by a 2mm thick
light guide, featuring more than 90,000 laser-etched dots across the
surface. This not only disperses the light evenly but creates a
twinkling effect as the eye moves across the fascia.
Located on the passenger side of the dashboard, the constellation and wordmark are completely invisible when the interior lights are not in operation. This is achieved using three layers of composite materials. The first, a piano-black substrate, is laser-etched to allow light to shine through the wordmark and star cluster. This is overlaid with a layer of dark-tinted lacquer, hiding the lettering when not in use. Finally, the fascia is sealed with a layer of subtly tinted lacquer before being hand polished to achieve a perfectly uniform, 0.5mm thick high-gloss finish, matching other high-gloss accents incorporated into the interior.
As well as creating a serene internal environment, Rolls-Royce’s pursuit of acoustic perfection creates a magnificent sound stage for Ghost’s Bespoke Audio system, which is engineered into the motor car’s very fabric. A resonance chamber into the body’s sill section essentially transforms the motor car into a subwoofer: exciter speakers bonded to the Starlight Headliner turn the ceiling into a single large speaker. A powerful 1300W amplifier drives 18 individual loudspeakers: state-of-the-art optimisation technology and high-precision magnesium-ceramic compound cones provide outstanding frequency response. Two active microphones detect anomalous frequencies, then trigger the amplifiers to counteract them, ensuing a pure and perfectly balanced listening experience.
The only components in the current Ghost model to be carried over from its predecessor are the Spirit of Ecstasy mascot and the beloved umbrellas concealed in the doors: everything else was designed, crafted and engineered from the ground up. It distils the Rolls-Royce brand values into a beautiful, minimalist, yet highly complex product that is perfectly in harmony with clients’ evolving needs, and precisely in tune with the times.
CO2 EMISSIONS & CONSUMPTION.
Ghost: NEDCcorr (combined) CO2 emission: 343 g/km; Fuel consumption: 18.8 mpg / 15.0 l/100km. WLTP (combined) CO2 emission: 347-359 g/km; Fuel consumption: 17.9-18.6 mpg / 15.2-15.8 l/100km. Ghost Extended: NEDCcorr (combined) CO2 emission: 343 g/km; Fuel consumption: 18.8 mpg / 15.0 l/100km. WLTP (combined): CO2 emission: 348-359 g/km; Fuel consumption: 18-18.5 mpg / 15.3-15.7 l/100km. Black Badge Ghost: NEDCcorr (combined) CO2 emission: 359 g/km; Fuel consumption: 15.8 mpg / 18.0 l/100km. WLTP (combined) CO2 emission: 359 g/km; Fuel consumption: 17.9 mpg / 15.8 l/100km. Further information: https://bit.ly/3XtQW7q