Design chief Giles Taylor chuckles when asked whether Rolls-Royce took the new Dawn convertible to any consumer clinics before the design was approved. "No, no, no. Does Chanel clinic its handbags?
"At the pinnacle end of the luxury market, the brand values are so particular and so carefully honed over a period of years -- in our case over 114 years of history -- we do not need to ask a number of customers, 'Do you think we are doing the right thing? Is this the right shape?'"
Rolls-Royce doesn't launch new cars very often, so when its Dawn convertible debuted at the Frankfurt auto show last month, the brand and its new design chief were cast into the limelight.
The Dawn, with its sensual lines and flowing body, is the third car on the smaller platform that was introduced with the Ghost sedan in 2009. It is the first model that bears the signature of Taylor.