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by George Skentzos

In preparation for skiing trips in Aspen and weekend drives through the Italian Alps, Rolls-Royce has been spied winter testing a prototype version of its upcoming ‘baby’ Rolls – the new RR4.

When the RR4 goes on sales from 2010 it is expected to double Rolls-Royce’s annual production to roughly 1600 cars as the ‘entry-level’ model into the ultra-luxury marque.
In overseas markets, the RR4 is expected to be priced between 200,000 and 300,000 Euros, or roughly A$390,000 to A$590,000.

2010 Rolls-Royce RR4 spied

Rolls-Royce has been tight-lipped on its new model, although CEO Ian Robertson has told reporters it would be “unmistakably a Rolls-Royce,” and that it will remain a niche model so as retain the exclusivity of the brand.

To facilitate the lower entry point into the brand, a second shift will be added to the Goodwood factory in England, where some 800 units will be produced on top of today’s output of 800 vehicles.

2010 Rolls-Royce RR4 spied

The heavily camouflaged prototype in these images does reveal that the RR4 will maintain the strong chiselled looks of the larger Phantom saloon.

To cut development cost and time, engineers will use parts from BMW’s long-wheelbase 7 Series but will utilise a power plant that’s uniquely Rolls-Royce.

2010 Rolls-Royce RR4 spied

Most of the shared parts will include various electronic components but the car “will have the attributes and behavior of a Rolls-Royce” said Mr Robertson.