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by Tim Beissmann

Luxury British automotive marque Rolls-Royce has confirmed plans to unveil an all-new coupe, the Rolls-Royce Wraith, at the 2013 Geneva motor show in March.

To be based on the brand’s ‘entry-level’ Ghost four-door, Rolls-Royce promises the Wraith will be “the most dynamic, powerful and beautiful” car in its history.

Head of the BMW-owned Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, Torsten Muller-Otvos, says the Bentley Continental GT-rivalling Wraith will set a new benchmark in the ultra-luxury segment when customer deliveries begin in the final quarter of 2013.

“Rolls-Royce Wraith will draw superlatives when it is unveiled in Geneva,” Muller-Otvos said.

“Expect the boldest design, the most dramatic performance and the most powerful Rolls-Royce that has ever played host to the famous Spirit of Ecstasy figurine. This is a car not only defined by a timeless elegance, but one that encapsulates a sense of power, style and drama.”

The Rolls-Royce Wraith will borrow its BMW 7 Series-derived underpinnings from the Ghost and is also set to inherit its 6.6-litre twin-turbocharged V12 engine – albeit with its output hiked from 420kW/780Nm to around 450kW and 800Nm.

Spy shots captured last year revealed a dramatic sloping roofline for the new coupe along with a shallow glasshouse and shorter rear overhang than the Ghost’s.

Initially rumoured to be called the Corniche, the new coupe sees the Wraith nameplate return to the brand’s line-up for the first time since the 1930s, when it was applied to four-door model of which 492 were produced.

Muller-Otvos said ‘Wraith’ – which is defined as an apparition of a living person that appears just before that person’s death – was the perfect name for the new model.

“Wraith alludes to an almost imperceptible but powerful force, something rare, agile and potent, a spirit that will not be tethered to the Earth.”

If, as expected, the Wraith follows the lead of the larger Phantom Coupe, the sportier two-door will carry a premium over the sedan that could potentially push the price out beyond $700,000.

More details of the Rolls-Royce Wraith will be revealed next month in the lead-up to its Geneva unveiling on March 5.




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