Used 2015 Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe Review

Unspeakably lavish and stratospherically expensive, the 2015 Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe is perhaps the world's most elegant two-door automobile.




what's new

The 2015 Phantom Coupe is essentially unchanged.

vehicle overview

It's possible that a 2015 Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe shopper won't really care what we here at Edmunds.com have to say. He might be concerned with more pressing things, such as managing a globe-straddling real estate empire, perhaps, or ruling Kazakhstan with an iron fist. But for the prospective buyers out there who are actually careful shoppers, we will henceforth offer our best opinion on Rolls-Royce's most extravagant two-door.

In actuality, we don't find everything to be roses for the Phantom Coupe. Its 6.7-liter V12 engine is exceptionally quiet and refined, but it's not particularly capable by contemporary standards. Eschewing forced induction of any type, the aging BMW-sourced motor tops out at 453 horsepower, which sounds jaunty enough but really isn't that significant in a 5,795-pound automobile. Rolls-Royce says the Phantom Coupe needs 5.6 seconds to reach 60 mph, trailing such luminaries as the Hyundai Genesis Coupe (5.3 seconds), which costs about as much as a couple Starlight headliners from the Roller's options list. More to the point, the Phantom Coupe's far cheaper sibling, the 2015 Rolls-Royce Wraith will do the trick in 4.4 seconds with its twin-turbocharged V12.

So, you don't buy a Phantom Coupe for its straight-line performance. How about handling? Alas, this 18-foot land yacht is ill-prepared for enthusiastic driving, notwithstanding the standard Dynamic package with its firmer dampers. Despite the promise of "sporty maneuverability" in the car's brochure, the truth is that it's just too massive to get frisky on twisty roads. Tree-lined boulevards and interstate highways are clearly its natural habitat.

But if you're just looking for the ultimate two-door cruiser, the car's credentials are second to none. Within its unique rear-hinged doors, a wondrous hand-assembled world of wood, leather and deep-pile carpet awaits, while modern conveniences like an 8.8-inch widescreen infotainment display augments the old-world charm. The backseat lacks the Phantom sedan's expansive spaciousness, but there's still ample room for a couple adults. Once underway, the air suspension soaks up bumps as if they're not even there while maintaining a certain well-bred discipline. The cabin stays virtually silent no matter what the speedometer says.

If you're wondering about alternatives, the 2015 Bentley Continental GT and 2015 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe provide superior speed and athleticism at much lower price points, as does the above-mentioned Wraith. But the big Rolls remains the undisputed king of coupes, and if you have the means to acquire one, that might be all you need to know.




trim levels & features

The 2015 Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe is a four-passenger ultra-luxury coupe. Standard equipment includes 21-inch cast-aluminum wheels, an electronically adjustable air suspension, automatic adaptive LED headlights, front and rear parking sensors, a surround-view camera system, power-closing rear-hinged doors, a power-closing trunk lid, multi-zone climate control, 10-way power front seats, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, memory settings, heated front and rear seats, a wool and cashmere headliner and two umbrellas hidden in the front fenders.

Standard electronics features include Bluetooth, voice controls and a BMW-derived electronics interface with an 8.8-inch display, a pop-out controller and a navigation system. The audio system is a Harman Kardon Lexicon Logic 7 surround-sound setup with 15 speakers (including two subwoofers), a glovebox-mounted six-DVD changer, an auxiliary audio jack, a USB/iPod interface and satellite radio.

Also standard is the Dynamic package, which adds a stiffer suspension, a sport steering wheel and sportier transmission and brake calibrations.

While the Phantom Coupe's options list does not officially feature a drinks cabinet or a refrigerator, it otherwise shares most of the Phantom sedan's customizable extras, including various upgraded inlays, monogrammed headrests, leather seat piping, a glovebox humidor, trunk-mounted parasols and a "Starlight" headliner with embedded pin lights simulating nighttime stars. Beyond that, Rolls-Royce's Bespoke program provides customization options that are primarily limited by your imagination. There are no fewer than 44,000 paint hues to choose from, for example, and the iconic Spirit of Ecstasy hood ornament can be decked out in gold plating or whatever you like.



performance & mpg

The rear-wheel-drive 2015 Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe is motivated by a 6.7-liter V12 that produces 453 hp and 531 pound-feet of torque. The transmission is an eight-speed automatic. According to Rolls, the Phantom Coupe launches from zero to 60 mph in 5.6 seconds. That's a poor showing for a top-flight luxury coupe.

The EPA rates the Phantom Coupe's fuel economy at 14 mpg combined (11 city/19 highway).

safety

The 2015 Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe comes standard with antilock brakes, traction and stability control, active front head restraints, side airbags for front occupants and full-length side curtain airbags. In addition, Rolls-Royce Assist emergency telematics and front and rear parking sensors are standard, as is a surround-view camera system that assists you with both parking and pulling into traffic.

Driving

The Phantom Coupe's 453-hp V12 is spectacularly civilized, going about its business so unobtrusively that it might as well be an electric motor in most situations. There's a drama-free surge of acceleration every time you lay into the go pedal, and the engine never seems to be working hard. As noted, however, the Phantom Coupe ultimately isn't very fast for what it is. In this price bracket, we expect to see one of the strongest engines on the planet; the Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG coupe, for instance, boasts a 621-hp twin-turbo V12 for less than half the money.

We haven't sampled a Phantom Coupe since the "Series II" revisions were made to its suspension and steering in 2013. However, in previous drives the car impressed us with its light yet accurate steering and its respectable composure around sufficiently wide bends. Like every Rolls-Royce, it has an ultra-absorbent ride that dispatches bumps, potholes and even speed humps with an absolute minimum of fuss. Moreover, you'll be hard-pressed to find a quieter cabin in anything with four wheels.

Interior

The Phantom Coupe may seat only four, but it still feels as large as your living room, at least for front seat occupants. Those first-row thrones face a broad, vertical dashboard, but the seating position is plenty high -- it's almost like being in an SUV. The rear-hinged "coach" doors make accessing the wide rear bench seat a cinch once the front seats have motored forward. As in the sedan, the rear seats are set back deep into the roof's cove, where it can get a little claustrophobic, particularly since no sunroof is offered.

Clean, traditional instrument dials and an elegant center-mounted analog clock contribute to the interior's formal atmosphere. Even with its standard performance steering wheel, the Phantom Coupe's cabin is too dignified to be sporty. It does feel very special, though, thanks to its many exquisite details. These include multilayer wood veneers, deep-pile lambswool carpets and yards of leather trim that's sourced from cows in high-altitude Alpine meadows free of thorny trees or barbed wire that might spoil their hides. Meticulous craftsmanship is evident in the splendid stitch work and pleated leather that no machine could finesse.

Hidden behind the clock is the Phantom's 8.8-inch infotainment screen with split-screen functionality, allowing multitasking like changing radio or media sources while following the navigation map. Eight memory keys below the screen serve as bookmarks for radio presets as well as one-touch recall of favorite navigation destinations. The entire setup is essentially a disguised version of the iDrive interface in BMW models, right down to the multifunction controller that pops out from the Phantom's center console. Generally speaking, it works well, though the initial learning curve can be steep. Other controls, particularly those for the front seats and climate control, are quirkily arranged and may also take some time to figure out.

The trunk can swallow 13.9 cubic feet of cargo, a paltry measurement for a car of such unusual size.

edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.