Rolls Royce has pulled the covers off the new Cullinan, the brand’s first-ever SUV and at the same time the world’s first super-luxury crossover.
The name Cullinan comes after the largest diamond ever discovered, which now is part of the British Crown Jewels.
Rolls Royce describes the Cullinan as an ‘all-terrain, high-bodied car that makes the idea of authentic, luxury off-road travel a reality for the first time’. After all, it was the customers who asked the British car maker to build the Rolls-Royce of SUVs.
The new Rolls Royce Cullinan is the second model to be based on the new aluminum ‘Architecture of Luxury’ platform, after the latest Phantom. Under the bonnet sits a reworked twin-turbo 6.75-liter V12 engine that makes 563hp (571PS) and more importantly 627lb-ft (850Nm) of peak torque from just 1,600rpm.
Since this is Rolls Royce we’re talking about, no 0-62mph (100km/h) times were announced but the company did say that the Cullinan is capable of hitting a limited 155mph (250km/h).
Magic Carpet Ride, no matter the terrain
The chassis features a re-engineered self-leveling air suspension system that now comes with larger air struts and more air volume, as well as stronger drive and prop shafts in order to successfully offer the ‘Magic Carpet Ride’, even on the toughest of terrains. The front axles features a new double-wishbone design while the rear utilizes a 5-link setup.
The all-wheel drive system is new and comes with a special ‘Everywhere’ button, enabling the driver to use all 627lb-ft of the torque in order to “glide” over any terrain, be it gravel, wet grass, mud, snow or sand. Rolls Royce claims the Cullinan offers the deepest wading depth of any luxury SUV, at 540mm (21,2in).
When driving off-road, the Cullinan’s active damper adjustment system will use an air compressor to actively push down any wheel it detects losing traction, in order to ensure that all wheels are constantly in contact with the ground.
The most posh truck on the planet measures 5341mm (210in) in length, 2164mm (85in) in width, 1835mm (72in) tall and rides on a wheelbase that’s almost 3.3 meters long (3,295mm/130in). Unladen weight is an unsurprising 2,660kg (5864lbs).
In comparison, the Bentley Bentayga is 200mm shorter, 166mm narrower and has a 2,992mm wheelbase (303mm shorter than the Cullinan’s).
Customers will be able to choose between two configurations for the rear passenger seats, including a normal bench (Lounge Seats) and a more luxurious two-seat setup (Individual Seats).
Boot volume is 560 liters with the parcel shelf, and 600 liters with the shelf removed. For the first time in a Rolls Royce, the rear seats fold down, creating a load capacity of 1,930 liters with a loading length of 2,245mm. This is after all the most practical Rolls Royce of all time.
Rolls Royce calls the Cullinan’s tailgate “The Clasp”, as a nod to when luggage was mounted outside the car. The tailgate itself is a two-section item and can feature a pair of special, picnic seats.
The highlight of the Cullinan’s rear passenger compartment is the deployable glass partition that isolates the cabin from the luggage compartment. This makes not only the cabin class-leading quiet but also seals the passenger compartment, allowing passengers to remain in the optimum temperature, even when the luggage compartment is open.
The new Rolls Royce Cullinan automatically lowers itself by 40mm when you approach it for easier entry, with the cabin featuring a completely flat floor and one of the widest door apertures available, thanks to the suicide rear doors.
Classic luxury mixed with cutting-edge tech
The steering wheel is thicker and smaller than other Rolls Royces while the central infotainment display is a touchscreen. As you would expect, the Cullinan comes with cutting-edge driver assistance and safety systems that includes everything from Night Vision and Vision Assist including daytime and night-time Wildlife and Pedestrian warning; Alertness Assistant; a 4-Camera system with Panoramic View, all-round visibility and helicopter view; Active Cruise Control; Collision Warning; Cross-Traffic Warning, Lane Departure and Lane Change Warning; a 7×3 high-Res Head-Up Display, WiFi hotspot, and of course the latest navigation and entertainment systems.
The new Rolls Royce Cullinan is priced from $325,000 MSRP, and that’s before you even start looking at the crazy long options list.