In a break from tradition, everyone’s favorite YouTube nerd Jason Fenske, a.k.a. Engineering Explained, took a break from explaining how turbos and four-wheel steering and active aero works, and gave us a comprehensive walk-around of one of the most misguided cars in recent memory: the Rolls-Royce Ghost Black Badge.
This special-edition Ghost is supposed to be the young person’s Rolls–with a daring (cringe) interior for the dynamic millennial (bigger cringe) who “break the rules and laugh in the face of convention” (unbelievable cringe). The Black Badge has a…polarizing blue and black interior, heavier, more responsive steering, and slight increases in power and torque. While these changes aren’t inherently bad, they sort of run counter to the Rolls-Royce ethos, don’t they?
Rolls-Royce doesn’t exactly have problems attracting young buyers. Rich people are rich people, and regardless of your age, a Rolls is the ultimate status symbol, the greatest vehicular indicator that you’ve made it. I don’t think Rolls-Royce really needed to cheapen their brand to appeal to young people. Aside from the utterly tone-deaf marketing material, the only real difference of the Black Badge is some fancy blacker-than-black paint (which you don’t even have to have) and the infinity symbol stitched everywhere. The steering may be “sportier,” but as Fenske points out, the car still steers like you’re turning a dial instead of a wheel. It ain’t exactly designed for autocross.
Still, if I were buying a Rolls-Royce, I would probably go for the Black Badge edition. Those exclusive wheels do look nice. And you can’t go wrong with more power, can you?