By Steve & Tamami Laser
[Note from the editor: We updated this story in May 2018 when Rolls-Royce released new photos along with preliminary features and specs.]
Bentley has one. Mercedes-Benz has several. And yes, even Lamborghini has one too. We’re talking about trucks, or more specifically, car-based vehicles more commonly known as crossovers. Rolls-Royce will soon be motoring into uncharted territory with a new model called Cullinan.
The upcoming multifaceted vehicle is named for the world’s largest diamond discovered in 1905 in the Magaliesberg Mountains in South Africa. Rolls-Royce has been testing the new model from the deserts of Africa and the Middle East to the freezing Arctic Circle and the canyons of North America.
To give Cullinan the proper look of a Rolls-Royce, Giles Taylor, Director of Design, and his team employed the Architecture of Luxury. “One of the first benefits of the Architecture of Luxury to the design of Cullinan was the ability to place the wheels and create a unique roofline silhouette that would give Cullinan an immediate sense of Rolls-Royce pedigree,” he says.
Cullinan’s re-engineered 6.75-liter twin-turbo V12 engine is rated at 563bhp/420kW and 627 lb.-ft./850Nm of torque. It’s also fitted with a new all-wheel drive, all-wheel steer system that the luxury automaker says is needed to “overcome any challenge.”
Underneath, Cullinan rides on a new double-wishbone front and five-link rear suspension tuned to deliver a “Magic Carpet Ride” with electronically controlled shocks. During off-road driving, an air compression system is designed to actively push down any wheel when it detects a loss of traction.
The driver can “finesse the off-road setting to glide over any situation” including rough tracks, gravel, wet grass, mud, snow or sand. Rolls-Royce says that when faced with deep snow, sand or “the need to ford streams,” Cullinan delivers the “deepest wading depth of any super-luxury SUV at 540mm.”
The driver is treated to an array of digital instruments along with a center touchscreen display offering various functions, map views and vehicle set-up. It can also be operated via a Spirit of Ecstasy controller mounted on the center console that includes buttons for Off-Road, Hill Descent Control and Air Suspension height adjustments.
Cullinan’s lengthy list of high-tech features includes Night Vision and Vision Assist with daytime and nighttime Wildlife & Pedestrian Warning, Alertness Assistant, a 4-camera system with panoramic view, Active Cruise Control, Collision Warning, Cross-Traffic Warning, Lane Departure and Lane Change Warning, Head-Up Display, and WiFi hotsport.
Customers will be able to select two different rear seating configurations. Individual seats (above) are separated by a fixed console that includes a drinks cabinet with “Rolls-Royce whisky glasses and decanter,” champagne flutes and refrigerator. Those who select Lounge seating, likely to be popular with families, are treated instead to three passenger fold-down rear seats.
Of course, there’s more. Customers can commission Rolls-Royce to create “Recreation Modules” via its Bespoke Collective. A motorized drawer built for easy installation into the cargo area houses items for a wide array of adventures. The list of possibilities is nearly endless, from fly fishing to photography, rock climbing, snowboarding, base jumping or even a Drone Module.
Preliminary features and specifications for UK market models are subject to change without notice.
News source and photos courtesy Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Ltd.
Story © 2018 CarNichiWa.com