The Black Badge series is one of Rolls-Royce’s most unique, and perhaps, most important offering to date, with more than 27% of all Rolls sold globally being a Black Badge model. So with the introduction of the second-generation Ghost last year, Rolls-Royce has now – of course – given it the same stealthy treatment.
Despite its name, the Ghost Black Badge can actually be specified in any of the 44,000 colours in Rolls-Royce’s palette, or any custom hue that you can imagine. But most of its customers, as expected, chose to instead go for the model-specific black paint.
Dubbed as the “motor car industry’s darkest black”, the hue consists of a whopping 45 kg of paint, which is atomised and applied to an electrostatically charged body before being oven dried. The Ghost Black Badge then gets two layers of clear coat, before being hand-polished by a team of four craftsman for the signature high-gloss piano finish.
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The entire painstaking painting process takes up to five hours, and allows for an intensity “simply unattainable elsewhere in the automotive industry”. To contrast the intense black, customers can also opt for a high-contrast hand-painted Coachline to give it a “black and neon” aesthetic.
Unique on the Rolls-Royce Ghost Black Badge is also a unique dark finish on the Spirit of Ecstasy ornament and Pantheon Grille, thanks to a special chroming process that results in a final thickness of just one micrometre – around one hundredth of the width of a human hair.
Completing the all-black exterior look is a set of bespoke 21-inch wheels, constructed from 44 layers of carbon fibre to give it a unique look and extra strength, and finished with a lightly tinted lacquer to protect the finish – but still allow clients to observe the complexity of the wheels’ unique carbon fibre construction.
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Inside, the Black Badge Ghost comes with bespoke trim pieces handmade from Bolivar veneer, layered with “technical fibre”, resin-coated carbon, and contrasting metal-coated threads laid in a diamond pattern to give it a three-dimensional effect.
There’s also the darkened air vents thanks to a physical vapour deposition process, but most noteworthy of all is the illuminated Black Badge infinity symbol on the dashboard, surrounded by 850 stars that are only visible at night, a perfect complement to the hallmark Starlight Headliner.
Like the exterior, the inside of the Ghost Black Badge can also be specified in any colour combinations that you like. Rolls-Royce says that, however, its customers do tend to stick with a darker motif, with brighter hues used solely to give it some more “pop”.
The car here that Rolls-Royce has customised to show off its new Black Badge Ghost model shows it off particularly well, with the main leather upholstery in black, accented by teal panels and trims pieces, and matched with teal brake calipers on the outside too.
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Beyond just aesthetic updates though, the Rolls-Royce Ghost Black Badge also comes with a number of mechanical tweaks to make it slightly more engaging to drive. The air suspensions have been tweaked to reduce body roll while cornering, and the 6.75-litre V12 engine also now makes 600 hp and 900 Nm of torque (up 29 hp and 50 Nm) to make the car feel a little lighter on its feet.
Exclusive to the Black Badge model is also the Low Mode button on the gearshift lever, which essentially unlocks the Ghost’s sports mode, resulting in 50% quicker gear shifts on the eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox. To be clear, it will never be a sports sedan, but at least it’ll still be pretty quick – even with its massive weight.
The Black Badge treatment will be offered on both the standard and long wheelbase version of the Rolls-Royce Ghost, and is now available for commission starting at GBP249,500 (approx. RM1.4 million) plus taxes.