Rolls-Royce Ghost Extended has been lengthened by 170mm but taking tight corners and making U-turns are a lot easier than you think
The concept that “bigger is better” is widely used for consumers, most notably in the F&B industry. Would you like to upsize that? Or max it up to a meal deal?
While Rolls-Royce is not exactly taking a leaf out of the McDonalds play book, it too believes in the idea that sometimes, bigger can be better.
That is how I found myself test-driving the larger-than-life Rolls-Royce Ghost Extended model recently. As the name suggests, this is an extended (longer) version of the second-generation of the vastly-popular and likeable Ghost.
That means even more legroom, and even more status on the road, than a typical Rolls-Royce. If you want the actual numbers, the Ghost Extended has been lengthened by 170mm from the standard Ghost’s 5,549mm frame.
Rolls-Royce said that to maintain the Ghost’s minimalist styling, its designers only extended the rear door and body to hide the extra length. Rollers are already popular choices among the chauffeur-driven elite, and the new Ghost Extended was designed with them in mind, offering a little more space for that frazzled chief executive or start-up founder commuting to and from the office.
The longer cabin allows you to add more optional extras like a mini fridge to keep your champagne in, which I hear is all the rage among the mega-wealthy these days. It also allows for reclining “serenity seats”, which Rolls-Royce likens to those on a business jet.
Plush leathers, quality woods and an old-fashioned clock delight the front seat passengers. Photo: Rolls Royce
While my test-drive model sadly did not come with a fridge, I got to try other onboard features such as the built-in Wi-Fi and the new air purification system. I could have just sat in the backseat all day, but one hour was enough to fall asleep, check my emails and watch a bit of TV on the built-in monitor to feel like a business titan.
After that, it was time to hop in the driver’s seat and try out the “magic carpet ride” that Rolls-Royce is famous for.
This may sound like clever marketing, but previous test-drives revealed how the car really does feel like it is floating on a cushion of air.
Superior suspension system
This carpet ride does not happen by accident. It is achieved by a unique combination of high-volume air suspension technology, stability control and Satellite Aided Transmission. The car can literally predict the road ahead and adjust the suspension accordingly — what Rolls-Royce calls its ‘Planar Suspension System”.
Alongside this technology, the Ghost is also all-wheel drive and all-wheel steering which comes in very handy given its large size. Taking tight corners and making U-turns are a lot easier than you would think.
Rolls-Royce is part of the BMW group and it shares a lot of its German technology and engineering across its luxury cars, including other Rolls-Royce models and the BMW 7 Series. The Ghost’s platform is also used in the Phantom sedan and Cullinan SUV.
While beast would be an inaccurate way to describe the Ghost Extended even though it is a vehicle of huge size and presence, the engine definitely qualifies for a beast-like description.
It is the same engine as the standard sized Ghost, a mega 6.75-litre V12 petrol one. That will get you 563hp of smoothly delivered power and a whopping 850Nm of torque. When you consider the extended version weighs 2.6 tonnes, to get from 0 to 100kph in only 4.8 seconds is pretty remarkable. Engineers were careful not to make the car much heavier when making it longer. They did this by using more aluminium parts for the car’s structure.
If you have never sat inside a RollsRoyce before, put it on your bucket list. This is where buyers tend to push their budgets when it comes to optional extras (like that champagne fridge).
As you would expect from a car that costs $1.4 million as its base price, it does not scrimp on the highest materials and details for the interior. Plush leathers, quality woods and an old-fashioned clock delight the front seat passengers.
And if you look up, you will often see the famous Starlight Headliner as an optional extra favoured by many owners. This is a series of thousands of fibre optic strands in the ceiling which depict a unique starlit night sky of your choosing. Often this is the constellation on the night the owner was born. It is a real work of art and the brightness of each star can be adjusted to suit your mood. It takes between nine and 17 hours to complete, depending on your design.
There is so much more to say about this car but to summarise, the Ghost is the most advanced car Rolls-Royce has ever produced in its 116-year history. From the backward-opening coach doors (which now open electronically) to the laser headlights, the onboard technology probably costs more than some luxury cars.
It is also a thing of beauty, inside and out.
Rolls-Royce Ghost Extended
$1,418,888 without COE
Engine: 6,749cc 48-valve V12 twin-turbocharged
Fuel consumption: 15.7L/100km
0 to 100kph: 4.8 seconds
Top speed: 250kph (electronically limited)
Cover and body photos: Rolls Royce