Rolls-Royce planning one or two new models based on the GhostWed, 29 Aug 2012 18:31:00 ESTVolkswagen bought Bentley, its English brand has two distinct lines, Mulsanne and Continental – with numerous variants at the Continental's lower price point – an SUV on the way and perhaps a sports car and a Mulsanne convertible, too. In the 14 years since BMW bought Rolls-Royce, its English brand has the Phantom and Ghost – with three variants at the Phantom's much higher price point. Rolls-Royce doesn't chase sales, but the difference in the brand direction helps explain why Bentley has sold more cars in the first six months of this year than Rolls-Royce sold all of last year.
And even though Rolls-Royce isn't solely about the tally, it would still like to improve on the 3,538 cars it sold last year – a sales record that eclipsed a mark set in 1978. To do so its CEO is planning one or two more Ghost-based models beyond the as-yet-unnamed Ghost Coupe due next year, perhaps to be called the Corniche, according to a report in Autocar. A convertible version of the Ghost Coupe is the obvious guess for one of them, and it would get the double-R "closer to 4,000" sales, where the CEO would like to be.
Sales might not be the only part of it, though; the headline of the Autocar piece says the CEO wants the new models because they're "required to give Rolls-Royce a proper identity." If that is accurate, we have no idea what kind of identity Rolls-Royce could be missing that would be served by a wider range of cars in the Ghost range, which by their place in the brand's own lineup are admittedly not the most opulent carriages on the planet.
By Jonathon Ramsey
See also: Rolls-Royce debuts Phantom Coupe Aviator Collection at Pebble Beach, Ghost Coupe to be fastest Rolls-Royce ever, Corniche Comeback: New Rolls-Royce coupe spotted testing.