AutoWeek reports that Rolls-Royce will go head-to-head with old rival Bentley in the, um, "budget-priced" $150,000-$200,000 market segment. The new Roller will be considerably more accessible than the flagship Phantom, which goes for $332,000. There is no information on body styles, but "less formal" coupe and sedan models are expected initially. The 100EX concept car (pictured) may hint at design directions.

By the time the new car appears in 2009 (luxury cannot be rushed, you know), Bentley should have a commanding lead in the market segment. In 2004 Bentley sold 5,000 Continental GTs, outselling the Rolls Royce Phantom 6 to 1.

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