It’s understandably difficult for most people to see any six-figure car as ‘entry-level,’ let alone something like a Rolls-Royce. And yet, that’s exactly what the 2021 Ghost is for the British brand: a more affordable entry point. So, what do you get when, instead of spending $500,000 on a Cullinan, you pay about 65-70% of that on the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost? Turns out, as YouTube team Throttle House explains, a real Rolls experience.
Even though it’s the least-expensive Rolls-Royce, the 2021 Ghost has plenty to offer
While the previous-gen Ghost was by no means a bad car, critics constantly noted that, underneath, it shared a platform with the BMW 7 Series, Autoblog reports. That’s understandable, given that BMW owns Rolls-Royce.
However, for 2021, the Rolls-Royce Ghost rides on the same platform as the Cullinan and Phantom, Car and Driver reports. Indeed, the only parts the 2021 model shares with the old one are the door-mounted umbrellas and the Spirit of Ecstasy badge. As a result, the 2021 Ghost is longer, wider, and more rigid. Plus, the new platform let Rolls-Royce give its entry-level sedan all-wheel drive and all-wheel steering, The Drive reports.
We say ‘entry-level,’ but that’s relative. The 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost starts at $332,500 before options, MotorTrend reports. And the example in the Throttle House video has enough extras to raise the sticker price to just over $367,000. But even so, that’s still cheaper than a brand-new Wraith. And you do get quite a lot for your money.
The 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost, like the rest of the Rolls lineup, has a V12. Specifically, a 6.75-liter twin-turbocharged V12 with 563 hp and 627 lb-ft linked to an eight-speed automatic. Although the 2021 Ghost weighs around 5600 pounds, thanks to that V12 and AWD, it goes 0-60 mph in a claimed 4.6 seconds, Motor1 reports.
But speed isn’t the point of the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost; luxury is. And it has that in spades. The interior is finished with leather, real metal trim, and open-pore wood. Besides wood, the dashboard also has an optional LED-illuminated glass section—and it’s customizable, Roadshow reports. There’s also the standard ‘Starlight Headliner,’ which now doubles as a speaker, DriveTribe reports, as well as the expected navigation and infotainment.
And that’s just the start.
Here’s what a $330,000+ price tag brings
Interestingly, although the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost has Apple CarPlay, it lacks Android Auto. That’s because, while it has a BMW infotainment system, it’s the last-gen version. But Rolls-Royce says Ghost buyers “don’t care about multimedia tech,” Roadshow reports. And considering what else the sedan offers, that’s understandable.
For example, the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost has air suspension. But it’s also an adaptive system that receives information about oncoming obstacles and road imperfections from a front-mounted camera. And not only does the 2021 Ghost have adaptive dampers, but the dampers effectively have their own dampers, Autoblog explains. Plus, the transmission shifts according to GPS data about oncoming intersections, hills, and turns, Roadshow reports.
The 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost doesn’t have drive modes, Road & Track reports, though it does have a full ADAS suite. It also has active anti-roll bars, double-pane glass, and a significant amount of sound deadening. In fact, some Ghost test mules were so quiet, Rolls-Royce had engineer various components to vibrate at a specific resonant frequency, R&T reports. Otherwise, the car would’ve made its occupants ill with how quiet it was.
But while the 2021 Ghost isn’t pre-occupied with infotainment tech, it does still have plenty of other features. It has a 1300W audio system and an HVAC impurity sensor system, Top Gear reports. Besides heated, cooled, and massaging seats, Rolls-Royce Ghost buyers can order things like a champagne fridge with crystal glassware, fold-down picnic tables, and rear-mounted tablets, The Drive reports.
The 2021 Ghost is “a real Rolls-Royce through and through,” MotorTrend says
Although it has rear-wheel steering, AWD, and a new chassis, the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost isn’t a sports car. And especially on tighter roads, it can feel slightly clumsy, Automobile reports. But, to be fair, it’s not pretending to be a sports car. It’s also not pretending to be a Rolls-Royce—because the 2021 Ghost is the genuine article, MT reports.
The 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost has “that reassuring…ultra-luxury low-down immediacy,” Throttle House says. That “velvety-smooth” V12 engine might be turbocharged, but because its torque peak comes just off-idle, the sedan accelerates effortlessly, The Drive reports. Even at highway speeds, the 2021 Ghost always takes off with ease, Autoblog reports.
‘Smooth’ is also an excellent way to describe how the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost rides and drives. “Nothing rides like a Rolls-Royce,” Throttle House reports, and The Drive, MT, and R&T concur. Motor1 describes the Ghost as riding “like a cloud…on top of a cloud.” And to Throttle House, the Ghost rides just as well as the (more expensive) Phantom.
In terms of the interior material quality, the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost is still “a step above” the Bentley Continental GT, Throttle House reports. The infotainment is a bit clunky, Automobile reports, and Throttle House notes that the screen technology is somewhat outdated. But there’s plenty of space inside this “cocoon of pure luxury,” The Drive reports. And if you need more room, there’s an extended-wheelbase Extend model.
Is it worth considering over the competition?
Given its price tag, the 2021 Rolls-Royce Ghost doesn’t really have many rivals.
Besides the previously-mentioned Continental GT, there’s really only the Mercedes-Maybach S580. In terms of features, it roughly matches the Ghost. And though its mild-hybrid 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 ‘only’ makes 496 hp, it has more extensive safety tech. Plus, a more updated infotainment system, and more tech features than the Ghost, Roadshow reports.
But then, the 2021 Ghost isn’t about tech. And, if we’re being honest, we’re splitting hairs between six-figure sedans. It’s like arguing which of your favorite desserts you prefer more. At the end of the day, if you were worried that the Ghost isn’t a real Rolls-Royce, don’t be.
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