Work continues on the 2018 Rolls-Royce Phantom as spy photographers have managed to catch the short- and long-wheelbase models being tested alongside each other.
Dressed in heavy camouflage, the redesigned Phantom has a familiar appearance but adopts a modestly revised front fascia with a prominent grille that is flanked by rectangular headlights. The déjà vu design continues further back as we can see door-mounted mirrors, rear "coach doors," and thick C-pillars. The two prototypes look virtually identical but the long-wheelbase variant has longer rear doors and a more accommodating rear passenger compartment.
Rolls-Royce is keeping specifications under wraps but the company has already confirmed the Phantom will ride on a new aluminum space-frame architecture that will eventually be used on all future models. Little else is known about the platform but it should enable the car to be lighter than its predecessor while still maintaining a "magic-carpet ride" quality.
Fans of the Phantom Coupe and Phantom Drophead Coupe will be out of luck as the company has decided against replacing the two flagship variants. While this is unfortunate news, the models have essentially been supplanted by the Dawn and Wraith.