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March 04, 2009

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Rolls-Royce To Unveil 200EX At Geneva Motor Show

200EX is a design study for a contemporary four-door saloon and shows the direction for RR4, a new model series from Rolls-Royce due for production in 2010.

Experimental models have always played a significant role in the history of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, from the first — 1EX, built in 1919 — to the most recent — 101EX, built in 2006. Unlike a concept car, the experimental models developed by Rolls-Royce Motor Cars have always been fully functioning vehicles, residing in a tangible world of wood, leather and metals rather than clay and foam. EX cars offer designers and engineers the opportunity for real-world innovation and have been used to showcase new components and engineering techniques as well as exterior and interior designs.

“Modern automotive engineering is a balance of creativity, innovation and application. 200EX is an opportunity to assess these new ideas”, explains Helmut Riedl, Director of Engineering.

100EX was the first experimental car unveiled after Rolls-Royce Motor Cars was relaunched under BMW Group ownership in 2003.

Revealed at the Geneva motor show in 2004, the two-door, four-seat convertible was built to mark 100 years of Rolls-Royce motor car design and engineering. Just two years later, 101EX was presented, which explored modern coupé design. Both of these cars inspired production models that not only closely resemble their EX progenitors but have also redefined luxury motoring in the modern age.

Following on from this success, the same group of designers and engineers has created 200EX, itself pointing the way to RR4, a new Rolls-Royce model scheduled for production in 2010. The brief for 200EX? To create a modern, lithe and dynamic Rolls-Royce that bears all the hallmarks of the great cars that have gone before it: effortless performance, unparalleled refinement, exquisite quality and confident design.

Within 200EX, Interior Designer Alan Sheppard has accomplished a contemporary atmosphere, incorporating the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars principles of fine materials and peerless comfort. The space is filled with natural light, which brings in a real sense of the outside world. However, substantial doors and a high shoulder line ensure that occupants feel cosseted and protected. In the rear, the intimate ambience of the lounge seat is emphasised by its position behind the C-pillar, heightening the sense of privacy.

Naturally, the finest materials have been used. Elegant, frosted lamps and chrome door handles feature, while details include traditional violin key switches, eyeball air vents, opaque dials and refined instrumentation. The interior of 200EX is finished in supple, natural grain Crème Light leather, with Cornsilk carpets and cashmere blend headliner. The featured wood veneer is Santos Palissander, chosen for its contemporary look and striking grain.

“200EX is a modern execution of timeless Rolls-Royce elegance, breaking with some areas of tradition but retaining the core values that make our marque unique,” says Chief Executive Officer Tom Purves. “We expect the more informal, agile design to broaden the appeal of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, attracting people who appreciate its fusion of refinement, new technology and contemporary style.”

Photos: RR

(20.02.2009)


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