Despite the fact there seems to be more Rolls-Royce Ghosts on the road than there are MOT’d MGBs on their way to the scrapyard, it may come as some surprise that the former isn’t actually on sale yet.
Because of this neither I, nor any other journalist, have driven the finished Rolls-Royce Ghost yet, although I am willing to guess that it will be a very good car. Combine decades of Britsh luxury know-how with German quality and technology and it seems unlikely they will get it too far wrong.
However I still can’t get my head around the estimated price: £170,000. For a luxury saloon. I can understand the Phantom’s pricing as it transcends normal boundaries and competes against little else, bar the ridiculous Maybach, but this?
The Ghost seems to be aligned a little too closely to more down-to-earth executive cars like the Mercedes S-class and BMW 7 series. Again, I need to stress that I haven’t seen it yet and am sure the quality of the Ghost is exquisite, but let’s put things into perspective.
The S-class, especially following a recent facelift, is an incredible automobile, still managing to be the best in segment. It is packed with pioneering technology and even if you go for the 518bhp S63 AMG it will set you back almost £80,000 less than the projected figure for the Ghost.
Will the Ghost be £80,000 – or rather the price of a new Aston Martin Vantage – better? It quite possibly will. But Rolls seems to be going into unchartered territory with this car, looking to tempt a new type of buyer, who wants something subtler and less extravagant than a Phantom, with a less grandiose presence and low-key looks.
Trouble is, they’ve also got to be looking to spend £170,000 on a new car.