Under BMW, Rolls-Royce has slowly but surely been growing. It all started with the Phantom super-saloon. Super at being big, super at being refined, but not so super at selling in the anticipated volumes.
That’s all changing, however, as the brand extends its reach overseas – and spins off new models alongside the four-door.
We’ve already seen the soft-top, the stately Phantom Drophead Coupé, and later this year Rolls will launch the two-door coupé.
The name hasn’t been announced yet, but we’re expecting it to be called simply the Phantom Coupé rather than the Fixedhead (the natural corollary to the Drophead). Whatever it’s called, its styling takes cues from the 101EX concept car unveiled a couple of years ago.
You’ll lose the option of the teak decking that is so captivating in the drophead coupé, but still be able to specify the brushed stainless steel bonnet visible on our scoop photo. Mechanically, the car will be very similar to the rest of the Phantom range, powered by an uber-refined, near-mute V12.
The newcomer will help swell Rolls-Royce sales further. Last year it shifted 1,010 cars, up a quarter on 2006, and the company has recently installed a second production line at its Goodwood factory to expand capacity in anticipation of the new ‘baby Rolls’ expected in 2009/2010.
Timeline: Show debut at Geneva 2008, sales kick off later this year
Engine: Shares 6.7-litre V12 from Phantom. ‘Adequate’ performance guaranteed
Prices: It’s a Rolls. So don’t grumble about the near-£300k cost