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Rolls-Royce launches Phantom Extended Wheelbase in China

by Drew Johnson

Rolls-Royce rolled out an extended wheelbase version of its Phantom sedan at the Beijing Motor Show.

The Rolls-Royce Phantom isn't exactly lacking in rear-seat leg room, but the British automaker is launching a new long-wheelbase version of the sedan for the Chinese market.

A long-wheelbase version of the Phantom might seem a little redundant, but the chauffeur-driven segment is one of the fastest growing in China. In fact, chauffeur-driven cars are so popular in China that most luxury automakers offer extended versions of their entry-level models.

Like the long-wheelbase model sold here, the Phantom Extended Wheelbase unveiled at the Beijing show is largely based on the standard Phantom, but the elongated sedan does sport a few changes. The Phantom Extended Wheelbase features a revised front fascia which includes a restyled bumper and rectangular light apertures. The sedan's headlights use full-LED technology.

Inside the Phantom Extended Wheelbase is fitted with a new multi-media system, including a new navigation system with 3D maps.

Power for the Phantom Extended Wheelbase is provided by Rolls-Royce's direct-injection V12, but the British automaker has swapped out its usual six-speed automatic gearbox for a new eight-speed unit. Rolls-Royce says the eight-speed improves fuel economy by about 10 percent, so the Phantom Extended Wheelbase should be capable of a respectable 20mpg on the highway.

No word on pricing, but the Phantom Extended Wheelbase lists from about $450,000 in the United States.