W uring the whole world is talking about the path to autonomous driving, the development at the British luxury brand Rolls-Royce is - if you will - taking the opposite path. Where the customers of the large limousines used to sit in the back almost without exception and did not intervene in the driving process, the rejuvenation of the target group is bringing an increasing number of self-driving Rolls buyers Nowadays, the infotainment system is also considered a must in a representative luxury limousine. Here Rolls-Royce benefits from the family connection to the BMW Group. Because this is how the small manufacturer from Goodwood in England comes to the parent company's electronics kit.
Inductive charging, but no Apple CarPlay
The operation of the infotainment system in the Rolls-Royce Phantom largely corresponds to that in current BMW models. The central display extends when necessary. In contrast to the relatives from Munich, however, it is not free in the room, but remains behind a pane of glass stretched over the entire dashboard.
The 'Spirit of Ecstasy' controller in the center console is folded out. It is also known, as it is a variant of the well-known, intuitive iDrive. With the turn-push button or the very attentive and quick-reacting voice control, navigation destinations are entered, be it the state banquet, the drive to the gala evening or a customer appointment.
The smartphone disappears under the heated armrest in the center console for inductive charging . This also prevents the secret distraction of the driving staff, since the device is not lying around in the field of vision. Apple CarPlay does not yet offer the brand, so the Bluetooth connection must be sufficient to play music content.
In addition to the standard loudspeaker arsenal, the brand's own Bespoke audio system can also be used for an additional charge. An output of 1,200 watts promise music enjoyment. Anyone who has to do with bass-heavy tones at work and thus have the money to buy a Phantom should perhaps stop at the specialist somewhere in Key West or the Hollywood Hills to get more pressure in the corresponding frequency ranges.
Second infotainment controller in the rear
There is also a controller for operation in the more than lavish rear, also stowed discreetly in the center armrest. In front of the two outer seats (the test car wasequipped with a three-seater rear bench seat if required), massive tables can be folded out of the backrests of the front seats at the push of a button, behind which screens can be seen to select the navigation destination or the music source from the rear. When you have made yourself comfortable on the reclining seat and look at the LED starry sky in the roof lining, you can also adjust the volume of the music by pressing a button in the C-pillar. Here, too, the Rolls-Royce Phantom finds the connection between classic and modern.