THERE ARE LUXURY CARS AND THEN THERE IS ROLLS-ROYCE. THIS MONTH, OHLALA EXPERIENCED THE EPITOME OF REFINEMENT AND CLASS IN THE 2022 ROLLS-ROYCE GHOST.
The Rolls-Royce Ghost is the brand’s most commercially successful product in its 116-year history. This overwhelming success allowed the brand to heavily invest their time, money and resources into establishing Rolls-Royce as a truly global brand. The first Ghost model was produced in 2009 and, since then, the design, craftsmanship and engineering have been further refined to result in the supreme machine we see today.
Since Rolls-Royce unveiled the 2022 Ghost, the model has received praise from career critics and enthusiasts alike. OHLALA was fortunate enough to receive the opportunity to thoroughly inspect as well as to test-drive the latest generation Ghost, compliments of the exceptional team at RollsRoyce Motor Cars Doha.
The moment the new Ghost came into view, we needed a few minutes of silence to fully comprehend the craftsmanship that stood before us. Over the years, OHLALA magazine has had the privilege of inspecting many a fine vehicle, however, the class exuded by the Ghost outshone anything we had previously encountered.
It’s easy to see that the Ghost has been a labour of love for the brand – a car that has evolved through their constant appreciation of modern luxury coupled with traditional class.
The front of this full-sized luxury saloon is framed by sharp bow lines that intersect with an angular light signature, creating an assertive yet aesthetically pleasing front end. Additionally, the Ghost has been designed with a celestial element to its character, with 20 LEDs underneath the top of the pantheon grille gently illuminating the vehicle’s vanes.
The minimalistic approach taken by the Rolls-Royce design team in their quest to obtain uncluttered perfection, led them to hand-welding the aluminium body structure. The result is the main structure of the car appearing as one fluid canvas, an effect we have never previously seen accomplished in this precise manner. The Spirit of Ecstasy emblem holds its position at the front and centre of the car’s bonnet, above the coveted Rolls-Royce badge, her forward posture inciting us to get behind the wheel and out onto the open road.
“The class exuded by the Ghost outshone anything we had previously encountered.”
At the flanks, a single straight stroke emphasises the Ghost’s considerable length, whilst the lower ‘waft line’ uses reflection to lighten the surface of the car. The back doors of the Ghost are rear-hinged, with the windows of both the front and back self-closing doors sharing equal proportions. This design element clearly reveals an achievement of balance between the Ghost being both a driver-orientated and a chauffeur-driven vehicle.
The dynamic intent of the car is further revealed by the subtle arch of the roofline, along with the 21-inch wheels, complete with centre caps that do not move when the car is travelling, ensuring the Rolls-Royce logo always remains upright.
The exterior of the new Ghost is rendered as one clean, expansive piece that flows seamlessly from the A-pillar, over the roof and to the tapered back end, where it culminates in an understated, near square light graphic – a standard element of contemporary Rolls-Royce design.
The uber-skilled craftspeople at Rolls-Royce applied their minimalistic design approach to the interior, an environment we could easily inhabit on a daily basis. Only the very best materials have been used throughout the vehicle, including the finest wood, leather and metals money can buy. The perfect stitchwork of the upholstery and leather finishes has been meticulously executed, creating incredibly long and perfectly straight lines of sheer mastery. Additionally, the Dark Amber finish of our Ghost model integrated fine veins of aluminium particles into the dark wood, adding yet another touch of magic to an already enchanting internal setting.
Further contributing toward the entrancing nature of the Ghost’s interior is the Illuminated Fascia – a world-first innovation that subtly echoes the Starlight Headliner already fitted in previous models. This remarkable design piece brings an ethereal glowing Ghost nameplate, surrounded by more than 850 stars, into the interior suite of the car. A truly remarkable innovation.
Rolls-Royce have not only considered our safety when designing the 2022 Ghost, but our health as well – with the latest models including a new Micro-Environment Purification System (MEPS). Highly sensitive Impurity Detection Sensors constantly monitor the exterior environment’s air quality and automatically switch from fresh air intakes to Recirculation Mode if unacceptable levels of airborne contaminants are detected. Air is then channelled through a nano-fleece filter, that removes almost all ultrafine particles from the interior in less than two minutes.
Our final observation of the interior involves the serenity of the Ghost’s cabin. Rolls-Royce have used over 100kg of acoustic damping material along with interior components that are tuned to a specific resonant frequency to create the most peaceful setting possible. Alternatively, you can opt for a livelier environment through the use of the 18-speaker bespoke sound system that reveals Rolls-Royce’s dedication to achieving acoustic perfection.
INFOTAINMENT & CONNECTIVITY
The 2022 Ghost houses a 10.3-inch infotainment touchscreen that runs on BMW’s iDrive system – not a surprise as the German brand in fact owns Rolls-Royce. This system is perfect in its simplicity and is as userfriendly as they come.
It offers compatibility and wireless connection with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Included also are 12.5 gigs of internal storage space, a 12-month subscription to Sirius XM, integrated navigation with voice activation and real time traffic information.
An optional theatre configuration is available which adds dual 12-inch displays to the rear of the vehicle, allowing passengers to partake in their favourite programmes whilst on the move.
POWER & PERFORMANCE
We simply could not wait to drive and to be driven in the new Ghost, and we admit to giggling like school children when the ignition was engaged. The sound and feeling of the 6.75-litre, twin-turbocharged V12 was enough to give us goosebumps and is exactly what we expected from a Rolls-Royce. This beast of an engine is coupled with an eight-speed transmission and delivers 563bhp and 850Nm of torque to the all-wheel drive and all-wheel steering setup. This translates to a 0 – 100km time of five seconds flat and an electronically capped top speed of 250km/h.
Add the Planar Suspension System to the equation and we experienced why it is referred to as the marque’s ‘Magic Carpet Ride’. This system is the result of 10 collective years of testing and development to create a sense of flight on land – a feat never before achieved by a motor car. And it works! We hardly felt a bump in the road throughout our extended journey. In fact, we have never experienced a more responsive and smooth driving experience in all our years of test driving.
The first-class braking system was more than up to the task of taming the abundance of power on offer and we effortlessly negotiated every twist and turn laid before us, along with the busy city streets – where we received our fair share of both envious stares and awestruck expressions.
SAFETY & ASSISTANCE
The 2022 Ghost is the most technologically advanced motor car Rolls-Royce has ever produced. This is proven through features such as the LED and laser headlights that offer more than 600m of illuminated range, ensuring great night-time visibility. Additional safety and assistance systems include vision assist; day- and night-time pedestrian and wildlife warning; active cruise control; alertness assist; a four-camera system with panoramic view; all-round visibility and helicopter view; collision warning; lane departure and lane changing warning, along with cross-traffic warning.
Additionally, we found the industry-leading 7×3 high-resolution headup display to be the very best we have ever experienced. Wi-Fi hotspot; self-park; and the very latest navigation systems have also been included in the 2022 Ghost.
It’s a Rolls-Royce.