The Rolls-Royce Phantom is one of the world's most luxurious automobiles but the model has been largely unchanged since it was introduced over a decade ago. That's about to change as the company has begun testing an all-new model which promises to be lighter and more upscale than its predecessor.

Previewed earlier this month, the 2018 Phantom has an evolutionary design with a prominent grille that is flanked by rectangular headlights.  The déjà vu design continues out back as we can see familiar bodywork, rear "coach doors," and thick C-pillars.

Rolls-Royce has been tight-lipped about the model but the company has already confirmed it will ride on all-new aluminum space-frame architecture.  This will enable the Phantom to be significantly lighter than its predecessor while maintaining a "magic-carpet ride" quality.

The new platform will underpin all future Rolls-Royce models including the luxury's brand upcoming crossover.  However, it appears the Phantom Coupe and Phantom Drophead Coupe will be dropped over slow sales.  This shouldn't be too much of an issue as customers can opt for either the Dawn convertible or the Wraith coupe.

Power will once again be provided by a V12 engine and it will favor refinement over performance.  Rolls-Royce could also offer a plug-in hybrid variant but nothing is official as of yet.

Gallery: 2018 Rolls-Royce Phantom spied with an evolutionary design

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