Thursday 11 June 2009

Baby Rolls-Royce caught uncloaked

Rolls Royce have been able to sell over 1,000 cars yearly. The introduction of the upcoming, slightly cheaper Ghost will surely see these numbers shoot up even more, hence the 150 extra workers being employed in the UK.

This two-tone prototype, caught undergoing final shake-down testing in Southern Germany will underpin an extended platform of the current LWB BMW 7 Series sedan with the finished product measuring at 5,399mm. Under the hood is a new 6.6-litre twin-turbo V12 petrol engine, cranking out 544bhp and maximum torque of 750Nm. Mated to this engine is a 8 speed ZF automatic transmission. Some technologies will also be shared with the Phantom sedan and the Drophead coupé. The production car will feature an advanced air suspension. To give occupants a velvety ride, the Ghost features an intelligent four corner air suspension system with multi-link aluminum front and rear axles. Ride comfort is further maximised by several advanced systems such as Active Roll Stabilisation and Variable Damping Control. Thanks to all this technological wizardly, the suspension is sensitive enough that it automatically detect and adjust itself when a rear passenger moves from one seat to the other. The suspension even offers a convenient lift and kneel function which can raise or lower the vehicle by 25mm.

According to Rolls-Royce's CEO, Tom Purves, "The Ghost will be as refined and as cosseting as anything that this marquee has ever produced. But it will have a dynamic vitality afforded to it due to the latest technology and engineering techniques. These have been bestowed on this car with the same care and attention as the more traditional materials within."

Based on the 200EX concept car, the Ghost was first publicised under the code-name of "RR4" during early development stages. Although the firm denied the Ghost (which harks back to the days of the old Silver Ghost) will exist, later Rolls Royce owned up to the fact that they were indeed planning to launch a "baby" Rolls.

The car will be unveiled officially at the 2009 Frankfurt motorshow. Sales will begin Spring 2010 and prices are speculated at around £180,000.

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