Rolls-Royce Cullinan – brand’s first-ever SUV debuts
In Cars, International News, Rolls-Royce / By Anthony Lim / 14 May 2018 7:20 pm / 0 comments
Rolls-Royce has officially revealed its new Cullinan SUV. Named after the largest rough diamond ever discovered, the vehicle is the brand’s first-ever off-road offering, and is certainly no wallflower when it comes to physical presence and specifications.
It’s a big car – at 5,341 mm long, 2,165 mm wide and 1,835 mm tall, with a 3,295 mm-long wheelbase, the Cullinan sits taller than its primary competitor, the Bentley Bentayga. The high-bodied, three-box design has plenty of taut vertical and horizontal lines, making for an imposing presence. Styling cues include a hand-polished stainless steel front grille, coach format doors and 22-inch wheels.
At 2,660 kg, it’s is also heavier than the Bentayga, by more than 200 kg. Motive power is provided by a 6.75 litre twin-turbo V12 petrol engine as seen on the Phantom, the unit offering 563 hp at 5,000 rpm and 850 Nm at 1,600 rpm in the way of output. No acceleration figures were listed, but this isn’t a car which you’d leave tyre marks on the tarmac with. Owners will be able to glide their way to a 250 km/h electronically-limited top speed.
As you’d expect, it’s all in the finer details and plushness with this one. The Cullinan prepares occupants for entry by lowering itself by 40 mm to aid ingress, and once inside, driver and passengers simply have to press the door-closing button to close the doors – the apertures can also be closed from the outside via a single touch of the sensor on the exterior door handles.
Cabin novelties include a smaller, thicker steering wheel as well as heated and ventilated seats, and driving information is presented via digital instrumentation, while a central touchscreen offers function selection, map view and vehicle set-up. A Spirit of Ecstasy function controller sits on the central console, along with ‘Off-Road’ and Hill Descent Control buttons and height adjustment controls for the air suspension system.
Trim materials include the usual wood and a new, durable and water-resistant boarded ‘Box Grain’ black leather – similar to that used in Italian high-end luggage and handbags – for the upper fascia.
The rear passenger compartment is where all the prime acreage is, and the automaker says that this has been designed to offer the best seat in the house based on particular needs – the Cullinan has a choice of two rear seating configurations, namely Lounge Seats or Individual Seats.
The Lounge Seat configuration offers space for three passengers in the rear, and the seats can be folded – a first for the brand – via boot or rear door pocket button controls. Both seat backs can be folded completely, creating a flat load area or in a 2/3 and 1/3 split.
The second rear configuration, the Individual Seat, sees two individual rear seats in place, separated by a Fixed rear centre console incorporating a drinks cabinet with Rolls-Royce whisky glasses and decanter, champagne flutes and refrigerator. The electrically-adjustable seats also offer tailoring of desired seating position for occupants.
Rolls-Royce Cullinan (20) Rolls-Royce Cullinan (21) Rolls-Royce Cullinan (22)
As standard, the boot area offers 560 litres of cargo space, growing to 600 with the parcel shelf removed. Access to this is via an opening tailgate called ‘The Clasp’. In a nod to an era when luggage was mounted on the exterior of the car, the rear profile of Cullinan is a two-part, ‘D-Back’ format, with the bustle denoting the place of the luggage, with the opening and closing of its two sections done automatically, accomplished via the key fob button.
The cargo area also comes with an additional feature in the form of a glass partition that isolates the passenger cabin from the luggage compartment, creating an inner ecosystem for the occupants. In addition to improving NVH levels, the sealed cabin created by the glass partition wall ensures that occupants remain in the optimum temperature set by the climate control even when the luggage compartment hatch is open.
There’s also the Viewing Suite, which affords Cullinan owners the ability to savour special moments in ultimate luxury on the rear deck, with the assistance of two rear-facing leather chairs with an accompanying cocktail table in the SUV’s rear compartment.
Luxury doesn’t mean a shortage of tech, and the Cullinan comes loaded with driver assist kit – on the list is active cruise control, collision warning, cross-traffic alert, lane departure and lane change warning as well as Night Vision and Vision Assist, which includes daytime and night-time Wildlife & Pedestrian warning. Also on, a four camera system with panoramic, all-round visibility and helicopter view.
Additionally, the equipment list includes an high-resolution head-up display, navigation and entertainment systems, a WiFi hotspot and five USB ports around the cabin. Mobile phones can also be wirelessly charged in the front of the cabin.
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Anthony Lim believes that nothing is better than a good smoke and a car with character, with good handling aspects being top of the prize heap. Having spent more than a decade and a half with an English tabloid daily never being able to grasp the meaning of brevity or being succinct, he wags his tail furiously at the idea of waffling – in greater detail – about cars and all their intrinsic peculiarities here.