To set the disposition, the inventive executive for Rolls-Royce took his architects to Westbourne Grove in my neighborhood of Notting Hill, the entirely west London road fixed with pastel hued Victorian homes, free shops and boutiques. Its front grille, known as the Pantheon because of its shape, has been raised higher than before, in a move supposedly inspired by last year's concept vehicle, the Vision Next 100.
Inside, the Phantom VIII is still on the subtle side of luxurious - and the better for it - with much of the technology hidden away, as well as the picnic tables and drinks cabinet. It also has a redesigned bumper with more vents.
The covers were pulled from the all-new Phantom this morning, unlocking a new and ludicrous level of luxury for the deep-pocketed elite.
When you do want information, though, the Rolls-Royce also features a 12.3in TFT screen that eases out of the dashboard, displaying the satnav, media information and more. Earlier images shown in our gallery are of development mules being subjected to cold-weather testing. Besides its premium looks, the auto is said to be the most silent of all the cars launched by the Rolls Royce.
Compared to the current Phantom's profile where the nose appears to drop off behind the front spindles, the new vehicle fixes what could be seen as that minor flaw with a continuous rise from the back of the boot to the front bumper. "As the patron settles in to the auto, an assistant or valet steps forward and lightly touches the sensor on the door handle so it whispers closed of its own accord, enveloping the occupant in "The Embrace", reads the most-heavily thesaurus'd press release I've ever seen".
And the lens above is the one we have to use when analyzing an Autocar report that talks about Rolls-Royce plans to further expand its lineup.
Under the bonnet is completely new 6.75 litre twin-turbo V12 engine that brings 420kW/900Nm. Yes, there are more expensive, flashier cars on the market, yet since its introduction by Sir Henry Royce in 1925, the Phantom has been the ultimate choice of transport for the world's most influential, powerful and glamorous.
In 2003, Rolls-Royce launched its first entirely new Phantom since 1968, under the direction of its new owners, BMW.
The range of optional extras, not to mention world-class artwork, means the cost of a new Phantom is effectively limitless, but prospective buyers can expect the basic model to start at around £350,000.
It drives the rear wheels through new eight-speed automatic ZF satellite-aided transmission that uses Global Positioning System location to ensure that it is always in the right gear for what's coming up around the bend, depending on how hard you've been leaning on the accelerator today. It churns out 563bhp and a frankly more important 663 lb-ft of torque from a lowly 1,700rpm. For example, the new Phantom's "Magic Carpet Ride" self-levelling air suspension uses body and wheel acceleration data, steering inputs - but this time features new Flagbearer tech, too. The auto also features the Starlight Headliner (the longest one yet) which makes you feel at one with the cosmos as the roof lights up like a starry sky.
In addition to its artistic credentials, Rolls-Royce is touting the vehicle as "the most silent motor auto in the world", with two layers of six-millimetre glazing and more than 130 kilograms of sound insulation through foam and felt.
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