GOODWOOD, U.K. – A new lightweighted aluminum spaceframe and an ultra-quiet V-12 turbocharged engine are among the highlights of the new Rolls-Royce Phantom.
This eighth generation of the Phantom first launched in 1925 uses an alloy spaceframe that will be rolled out to coming models of Rolls-Royce’s Ghost, Wraith and Dawn with the automaker promising no future Rolls-Royce will employ monocoque construction as used by mass manufacturers.
Designed and engineered from scratch, the architecture is said to be scalable to the size and weight requirements of different future Rolls-Royce models, including those with differing propulsion, traction and control systems.
The chassis is about 30% more rigid than the architecture used in Phantom VII and promises improved ride comfort, acoustic comfort, seat comfort, exterior presence and interior space.
Handling is enhanced by a new double-wishbone front axle and 5-link rear axle, improving control over lateral roll and shear forces and improving agility and stability, and is accompanied by 4-wheel steering.
In addition, the Flagbearer edition – alluding to those men who were required by law to carry a red flag ahead of the earliest motor cars – adds a stereo camera system integrated in the windshield to see the road ahead, adjusting the suspension proactively rather than reactively up to 62 mph (100 km/h).
Despite the lightweighting, the Phantom’s silent ride comes thanks to more than 286 lbs. (130 kg) of sound insulation, the largest-ever cast-aluminum joints in a body-in-white for better sound insulation and use of high-absorption materials. Acoustic insulation from road noise is helped by the use of double-skin alloy on areas within the floor and bulkhead of the spaceframe. Further noise insulation is achieved by inserting dense foam and felt layers between these skins.
Rolls-Royce also worked closely with its tire supplier to develop Silent-Seal tires that feature a specific foam layer placed inside the tire to stop cavity noise and reduce overall noise by 9 db. The overall acoustic result is a 10% reduction in cabin noise at 62 mph.
Power comes from a new 6.75L V-12 Phantom engine employing two turbochargers that contribute to low-end torque output of 664 lb.-ft. (900 Nm) at just 1,700 rpm while delivering 563 hp. It is coupled to a Satellite Aided Transmission married to a ZF 8-Speed gearbox.
“From its debut in 1925, a Rolls-Royce Phantom has been the choice of the world’s most influential and powerful men and women, and as a result, a constant presence at history’s most defining moments,” Rolls-Royce Motor Cars CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös says. “As this next chapter in the Rolls-Royce story opens, the New Phantom points the way forward for the global luxury industry.
“It is a creation of great beauty and power, a dominant symbol of wealth and human achievement.”
No pricing has been published, but expect to pay north of the current model’s £347,256 ($455,307) starting price.