Pros: The ultimate luxury car; unbeatable presence on the road; immense power despite huge weight and size; ultra-smooth ride

Cons: Very expensive; even more pricey thanks to big depreciation; difficult to drive in crowded cities due to size and weight

What's new: The 2013 Rolls-Royce Phantom received a face-lift for the new model year with revised headlights. Other updates include a new 8-speed automatic transmission, a larger interior screen and an improved camera system to aid visibility.

Overview:

The Rolls-Royce Phantom is offered in four body styles. The base-level Phantom is a full-size, 4-door luxury sedan that ranks among the largest cars on sale. There's also an extended-wheelbase model (EWB) that provides even more interior room. Finally, there are two different 2-door models: a convertible dubbed the Phantom Drophead Coupe and a fixed-roof coupe called the Phantom Coupe.

All Rolls-Royce Phantom models use a 453-horsepower 6.8-liter V12. The Phantom's sole transmission is now an 8-speed automatic, which improves fuel economy and acceleration over last year's 6-speed. A navigation system and air suspension are standard. Sedan models feature rear-hinged doors to aid in passenger entry and exit.

The 2013 Rolls-Royce Phantom starts just below $400,000, while the extended-length EWB model is closer to $475,000. The fixed-roof Phantom Coupe starts around $430,000, while the Phantom Drophead Coupe starts around $472,000 with shipping. These high-end prices make the Phantom one of the most expensive new cars on sale.

author photo

Doug DeMuro has a wide range of automotive industry experience, from work at a Ferrari dealership to a manager for Porsche North America. A lifelong car enthusiast, Doug's eclectic vehicle purchases include a Porsche 911 Turbo, an E63 AMG wagon, an old Range Rover and a Mercedes Benz G-wagen.

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