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My new car, again

Discussion in 'Motors' started by PMKeates, 9 Jun 2021.

  1. PMKeates


    Joined: 16 Jul 2004

    Posts: 14,052

    Hi there

    Some of you may remember that two years ago I bought an Aston Martin V12 Vantage to replace my BMW M5 V10 (see thread here: https://www.overclockers.co.uk/forums/threads/my-new-car.18880013/). The Aston is a great car and captures a real analogue feeling to driving - proper manual transmission, no special modes or adjustable suspension. Just a nicely set up, balanced, sports car, powered by a fantastic sounding V12 wrapped in a beautiful design with a high-end interior.

    I'd come to love the car but found it was a bit too much of a compromise. It's a bit firm for day-to-day use around London, and obviously has no rear seats. I'm keen to do some trips with friends and my parents and it just doesn't work for that. I considered trading it for something like a Bentley Continental GT Speed, but found they didn't feel as exciting or special as the Aston, and while they were very nice they didn't make me go "wow". It was also not the biggest in the back for having four adults on a long trip. I looked at the DB11 which was more exciting, but even smaller in the back!

    I test drove various cars as potential replacements, but I faced the dilemma of loving the involvement and fun of driving the Aston, but not being able to find a car that delivers the same but also with proper comfortable touring. I realised I needed a second car.

    After some more test driving I found myself eyeing up a current gen Range Rover Autobiography 5L Supercharged. Nice and comfortable, plenty of tech, practical, great driving position. Just a bit boring, and most cars seemed to be in spec that I didn't want e.g. black black black and big wheels. They also have horrific insurance costs in London as they are constantly getting nicked. I also found myself on Auto Trader looking at an entirely different kind of car.

    So, to go with the Aston, a few weeks ago I picked up my Rolls-Royce Ghost. It's a beautiful specification, painted in a sort of rose champagne gold, with cream leather interior and brown contrast piping. It's trimmed with a lovely walnut wood and has the cashmere blend headlining with panoramic roof, and of course the deep pile lamb’s wool matts Rolls-Royce are famous for. At just over 22k miles it's in great condition.

    I've always wanted a Rolls-Royce and have loved the brand since I was a kid. It really does feel particularly special to drive despite being the "baby Rolls-Royce" and sharing 18% of its parts with the 7 Series it has a common platform with. What is most remarkable is the way it drives - extremely smooth engine and transmission (specially tuned for comfort, not performance), and the best ride quality and most comfortable seats of any car I've driven. Makes an L405 Range Rover seem rough and harsh by comparison. Absolutely serene. It has wonderfully light steering and of course the 'flying lady' leading the way ahead. I also love the design approach Rolls-Royce take, with a focus on simplicity and of things being "just so". For example, you just have a D, R, N for the gearbox - with a "Low" mode in case you are driving on mountain roads and need to hold lower gears longer. The climate control is just a little dial with hot and cold, but with an upper and lower split in classic RR style. The navigation screen can be hidden behind the wood veneer. This is all complemented by lovely switchgear and beautifully soft and supple leather for the upholstery.

    Performance wise it's astonishing. The 6.6 L V12 twin turbo has 570hp and 780Nm of torque, and together with the 8-speed gearbox accelerate the car quicker than you'd ever need. The active air suspension and dynamic anti-roll bars mean that despite the 2.4 tons of mass you can carry significant pace in a bend, but in a composed way.

    Ultimately I wanted this as a day-to-day comfortable car that is brilliantly capable on a big trip with four adults. It does this and much more, and short of a Phantom is arguably the best luxury car in the world. Together with the Aston I think they make a good fleet. Very happy, would recommend :)

    I will take and upload some proper photos at some stage, but here's a couple from the dealer to give you an idea!


  2. Squidward

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 27 Apr 2018

    Posts: 1,259

    Lovely car OP! Is it specced with the starlight headliner?
  3. watercooledman

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 12 Jan 2021

    Posts: 1,301

    oooooh very nice more pics of this please
  4. PMKeates


    Joined: 16 Jul 2004

    Posts: 14,052

    No it isn’t. You have a choice of that or the panoramic roof, the roof was a dealbreaker for me. Massively brightens the interior!
  5. Malevolence


    Joined: 21 Oct 2011

    Posts: 16,927

    Lovely motor. Plus, suicide doors make everything even better.
  6. panthro


    Joined: 19 Nov 2004

    Posts: 12,034

    Location: Wokingham

    Mental. Congrats.
  7. PMKeates


    Joined: 16 Jul 2004

    Posts: 14,052

    Hah yes. They do add to the sense of occasion!
  8. DRZ


    Joined: 2 Jun 2003

    Posts: 6,892

    Location: In the top 1%

    This is the most "you" car I can think of. Congratulations!
  9. mjt


    Joined: 31 Aug 2007

    Posts: 18,857

    I guess the insurance on this is cheaper than a RR? Not a fan of the colour but can’t knock a Rolls. Enjoy!!
  10. [TW]Fox

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

    Posts: 157,634

    It's rubbish because it has the wrong version of iDrive. What were you thinking?!
  11. Mr_Sukebe

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 23 Dec 2002

    Posts: 9,369

    Location: London

    Awesome. That’s ace, and in many ways far more usable in the UK than many super cars
  12. Maccy


    Joined: 23 Nov 2004

    Posts: 38,396

    Location: Herts

  13. geekman


    Joined: 28 Sep 2012

    Posts: 3,561

    Location: Monterrey, Mexico

    There's a lot of people on here with fantastic cars, but this is one of the few that I look at and really, really want. Congrats!
  14. Robbo

    Capo Crimine

    Joined: 2 Jan 2009

    Posts: 55,249

    Brilliant. I was just thinking the other day I wish more people would start buying these instead of high spec Range Rovers, while they may be good, it's not a patch on a Roller. I have the F01 730d LCI and it's great to drive for a big car, so I imagine this will be too. The driving modes do make a proper difference unlike most cars.
  15. Jez


    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 32,801

    Indeed, seconded!

    Sam, all I can say is haha, amazing car :D
  16. Yaayuh!


    Joined: 5 Nov 2010

    Posts: 21,484


    Though if I’m honest, I’ve always thought of them to be more of a passenger’s car.
  17. PMKeates


    Joined: 16 Jul 2004

    Posts: 14,052

    Yes, it was less than half the cost to insure compared to a Range Rover of similar value. I should have taken it as a warning signal when I hired a Range Rover from Hertz and they wanted me to use a steering lock as if it were 1980.
    The usability is what makes it great. In the end it's just a regular car, albeit a very nice and very big one. I thought it would be much harder to manoeuvre and park than it actually is. I'm using it every day!
    Driving modes? There's none of those in the Ghost :p You just put it in D with the steering column shifter and that's it. You can raise the suspension for clearance and lower it for entry, but there's no changing the stiffness of the chassis, weight of the steering, throttle response or anything like that. It's set up as Rolls-Royce believe a Rolls-Royce should behave.
    At the dealership we sat for a bit in a Phantom Extended Wheel Base. Lovely car, but truly gigantic at 6.1m long and all about the rear seats. That felt very much a passenger's car. The Ghost on the other hand is the baby Rolls at 'only' 5.4m (for the standard wheel base which I have), which is bigger than most cars but relatively small by Rolls-Royce standards. It's a little bigger in the back seats than the front, but more or less even. It's obviously very comfortable for passengers but you never feel like you're a chauffeur when you're behind the wheel - it's an absolute pleasure to drive at any pace.
  18. Nasher


    Joined: 22 Nov 2006

    Posts: 20,994

    Alan Sugar spec.
  19. turbot1984

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 6 Jan 2012

    Posts: 1,905

    That's lovely, colour is great. How does it compare performance wise to the old M5?
  20. Chris1712


    Joined: 29 Jul 2004

    Posts: 9,422

    Location: Somerset

    Lol the ocuk fleet is getting silly now. What happened to all the screw modded 306s and Mondeo Ghia X posts?

    Strong buy sir, are you tempted to change the V12V for something more lairy now?