Rolls-Royce is a name associated with luxury, style and effortless performance and also sporting huge price-tags. The Phantom which was the first offering under BMW was responsible for bringing the brand into the 21'st century and also getting the tag of the 'best car in the world'. In India the less expensive and smaller Ghost brings in the numbers but the Phantom is the flagship. So on 21st September, Rolls will launch the Phantom Series II.
This new version has lots of changes mostly to the looks and interiors. The new, modern front-end for Phantom Series II, has new rectangular light apertures and re-designed front bumpers are also fully LED light clusters. For balance and proportion, this is integrated horizontally across the centre of Phantom's four-compartment headlamp. Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupé and Drophead Coupé now come with a single piece grille surround, while Phantom saloon features a new rear bumper incorporating a polished stainless steel highlight.
Rolls-Royce Phantom Saloon and Extended Wheelbase wear a new front wing R-R badge with repeat indicator while three new wheel options, including painted, part-polished and polished, add to the range of 21" wheels, the largest fitted as standard to any production car. The interior however is a different story as it looks stunning and is very luxurious. It is full of wood, chrome and leather and deep, lambswool rugs.
The Phantom Saloon's theatre configuration adds two monitors within veneered picnic tables for rear seat passengers which are linked to a multi-media player, mounted in a compartment at the rear of the centre console. The inclusion of AV connectors, a six-DVD changer housed in the lower glove box and USB port in the centre console, means occupants can view separate content wherever they may be seated, front or rear.
The long features list includes a LOGIC7 surround sound system by Harman, USB, Aux-in and 12V power sockets. Additionally, music can be copied directly onto the car's hard-drive, thanks to the addition of a USB port in the glove compartment. A welcome feature is a new camera system which is offered as standard for all Phantom Series II. Cameras are positioned in five locations, two in the curves of the front bumper, two on the underside of each wing mirror and one in the trunk lid.
Under the long hood there is a naturally aspirated 6.75 litre V12 engine. This direct-injection petrol engine develops 720Nm of torque more than three quarters of which is available at 1,000 rpm. The torque curve remains largely flat between 1,000 and 3,000 rpm - an important prerequisite for effortless city driving - and moves occupants from 0 to 60 in 5.7 seconds. But the talking point is the ride which is a trademark RR feature, its effortless and the refinement is out of the world.
The new Phantom Series II also has a new 8-speed automatic gearbox and rear differential and fuel consumption is improved by 10 percent. Not that owners would notice...
It takes 60 pairs of hands and more than 450 hours to design, construct and craft each Rolls-Royce motor car so it is indeed a special car. In India and in the rest of the world only a handful can enjoy this car but that doesn't stop it from being an icon.