Eighth-generation model on course to arrive in less than two years; early prototypes of future Phantom have already been seen testing
The image, shown above, comes after the car was leaked onto the internet by Chinese media. It shows the car’s bonnet line and front headlight.
The future model, which will be revealed in July 2017, gets all-new aluminium architecture and a refreshed exterior design, including headlights that look similar to those of the Rolls-Royce Ghost with a step in the lower edge of the light making way for the indicator strip.
It’s been seen testing in public for several months. Development cars showed the car’s new front bumper design that features wider air vents, which extend further out towards the car’s sides, and a new full-width grille.
The Phantom has previously been spotted testing in Los Angeles by eagle-eyed Autocar reader Nico Pellerito.
At the rear, the bumper appears to protrude less than that of the current Phantom, with a more flush design from the boot lid to the rear bumper. There are also more rounded tail-lights, but these are temporary units rather than final production parts.
Overall, the car’s design is an evolution of the current flagship model, making it instantly recognisable as a Phantom.
Rolls-Royce released a picture of the 2018 car’s structure in the latter months of 2016 (see gallery). Earlier images shown in our gallery are of development mules being subjected to cold-weather testing.
Insiders expect the new car to feature one of two possible engines: a more powerful version of the current Phantom’s 6.75-litre V12 unit, or a boosted version of the 6.6-litre V12 unit featured in the new Dawn.
Production for the previous Phantom only just finished at the start of this year. The last car was a one-off special produced with a nautical theme for a ‘connoisseur collector’.