Currently reading: Rolls-Royce primes Series 2 Ghost with V12 power
Updated ultra-luxury saloon will use one of the marque’s final petrol engines before it switches to EVs in 2030

Rolls-Royce is gearing up for the launch of the Series 2 Ghost saloon, which is set to be one of its final V12-powered production cars.

Former CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös confirmed in February 2023 that Rolls-Royce would go electric-only in 2030 and that all of its brand-new models would be EVs.

However, the upgraded Series 2 versions of Goodwood's existing cars – the Ghost, Cullinan SUV and Phantom limousine – will retain their 12-cylinder petrol engines.

Müller-Ötvös said: “By the end of 2030, there will be no more V12. Series 2 cars will be V12. Brand new Rolls-Royces will always be electric.”

The new Ghost has now been spotted undergoing winter testing with minimal camouflage, suggesting it's being readied for an imminent unveiling.

Rolls-Royce Ghost facelift accelerating

Spy images of camouflaged cars reveal that its front and rear lighting signatures have been reworked, taking inspiration from the new Spectre electric coupé.

Whereas the current Ghost’s headlights feature two projectors encircled by a daytime running light, the Series 2 gets three block-style LEDs integrated into a thinner housing.

The rear has received a similar treatment, with rounded lights swapped for vertical columns of LEDs.

At the front end, the lower grille area appears to have harder, more defined lines and the sensor box is more prominent, hinting that the car’s assisted-driving technologies may have been upgraded.

Rolls-Royce declined to comment on the new images.

Rolls-Royce Ghost facelift camouflaged – front, turning corner


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Rolls-Royce has yet to confirm whether the Series 2 cars will bring any mechanical changes, but Müller-Ötvos said the firm would continue investing in the V12 “to meet new requirements”. “We’ve not fallen out of love with V12,” he said.

The lifespan of the firm's V12 will doubtless be extended by its limited-run Coachbuild cars, which to date include the Sweptail, Boat Tail and Drop Tail.

Design director Anders Warming previously told Autocar the V12 was selected for the Drop Tail over an electric powertrain because Rolls-Royce was “celebrating” the roadster “and the V12 is a powertrain we will be celebrating for the next couple of years”.

Asked when Rolls-Royce would be ready to launch an electric coachbuilt special based on the Spectre, he said: “Time will tell.

Charlie Martin

Charlie Martin Autocar
Title: Editorial Assistant, Autocar

As a reporter, Charlie plays a key role in setting the news agenda for the automotive industry. He joined Autocar in July 2022 after a nine-month stint as an apprentice with sister publication, What Car?. He's previously contributed to The Intercooler, and placed second in Hagerty’s 2019 Young Writer competition with a feature on the MG Metro 6R4

He is the proud owner of a Fiat Panda 100HP, and hopes to one day add a lightweight sports car like an Alpine A110 or a Lotus Elise S1 to his collection.

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GBM 11 March 2024
Why so soon?