Rolls-Royce Ghost (of a Chance)

Chances are, none of us are going to stay at any of the three five-star hotels on The Pearl-Qatar, the swank 985-acre man-made island offshore of Doha.

Chances are, none of us are going to stay at any of the three five-star hotels on The Pearl-Qatar, the swank 985-acre man-made island offshore of Doha. Chances are equally good that there won’t be a Rolls-Royce Ghost in our more modest man-made garages, either.

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But, speaking of The Pearl and Rolls: “Having seen the development of The Pearl Qatar over recent months I am convinced that it is the ideal environment to house the pinnacle of luxury in the automotive market. Our presence on this exclusive venue reinforces the strategic importance of Qatar and the Middle East region to the future growth of Rolls-Royce,” said Tom Purves, CEO, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, at the opening of a dealership there November 8.

During development, the Ghost was codenamed the “RR4.” It was a car that would be more modest in size and price than the Phantom. In Spring 2008, when sketches were revealed, chief designer Ian Cameron, said, “The RR4 has a more informal presence than the Phantom models with a greater emphasis on driving. In design terms this is expressed through its slightly smaller dimensions, yet with powerful, purposeful proportions. It is a true and uncompromising Rolls-Royce in every sense.”

Informal. Right.

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The Ghost is largely hand built by 60 people during a process that requires at least 20 days, seven of which are dedicated to the finishing process. But before it is painted, it is welded—there are 4.9 meters of arc welding and brazing and 6,988 spot welds—and meticulously polished. The vehicle is mainly steel, although it does have an aluminum—or aluminium—hood—or bonnet.

The four-door seats five—or cossets them in informal, for a Rolls, luxurious appointments—and has a 563-bhp V12 that propels the vehicle at a stately 0 to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds, and an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission. This is no mean feat, as the vehicle tips the scales at some 2.6 tons. It is 212.5 in. long, 129.7-in. wide, 61 in. high, and has a 129.7-in. wheelbase. To help assure maneuverability—or, more precisely, the ability to maneuver the vehicle in space—there are rear-, front-, side-, and top-view cameras.

Well, you can dream.

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