Earlier this year Rolls-Royce took the appropriate measures to make sure that the end of production on their Phantom model won’t affect the company’s profits. To accomplish that, they launched the stunning Dawn drop top and shifted their focus on the Wraith and Ghost models. This is how in March we ended up being introduced to the Black Badge models, a sort of epitome in luxury for those looking for a double R emblem.
The Black Badge versions are truly the best of the best, coming with bespoke features as well as …. bespoke price tags. The whole marketing effort behind them is trying to attract a younger demographic, one made of “young, self-empowered, self-confident rule-breakers” as the brand itself puts it. Indeed, the website section dedicated to these models is featuring younger than usual customers and even the video below seems to break some habits.
Whereas around the world the Spirit of Ecstasy emblem stands for grace, style, elegance and wisdom, this time we’re presented with a wilder side of things. Even though both the Wraith and Ghost models have V12 engines under the hood good for mind-blowing sprints, they don’t really belong on a track, right? Well, that’s exactly what the Goodwood-based manufacturer did, to prove that they can also go wild if they want to.
And what better way to show your customers the extra power the cars come with if not on a track? The 6.6-liter V12 engine of the Ghost Black Badge is just that bit more menacing. The engine output modifications see power increase by 40hp to 603hp and torque by 60Nm (840Nm) compared to the normal Ghost.
Intuitive throttle response, delivered by computerized smart electronics, carefully hones the response of the transmission. Beyond 25% throttle, the transmission transforms its character, holding gears for longer and shifting between 200 RPM and 500 RPM later, dependent on gear. Additionally, initiating a downshift requires 20% less heft on the throttle, making Ghost Black Badge react more quickly to driver inputs. Under braking conditions the transmission downshifts a few RPM sooner as well.
The same feats apply to the Wraith even though the power output of the Coupe remained the same, only the torque figure going up by some additional 70 Nm. The Wraith Black Badge also revs all the way to 6,000 RPM before each gear change when the throttle senses that it is at 80-100% open. This gives a more direct throttle response feeling during spirited driving with peak power available more of the time. In addition, with the Intuitive Throttle in its mid-range (c. 70% to 80%), the gearbox is instructed to adopt a faster shift pattern. Of course, all these upgrades also come with new brake rotors that are 1 inch bigger in diameter to keep these beasts in check.