The Rolls-Royce Cullinan has finally been revealed as the first SUV ever from the ultra luxurious British marque.
The Cullinan is built on an all-aluminum architecture and carries on RR tradition by being boxy, elegantly in-your-face, and using rear-hinged coach doors. It’s powered by a smooth 6.75-liter twin-turbo V12 that outputs 563 bhp and 627 pound-feet of torque. AWD and four-wheel steering are standard. Rolls-Royce has promised that its ultra soft signature “Magic Carpet Ride” will be intact, even when off-roading. Hill descent control and a GPS-aided self-leveling air suspension are sure to help with that.
RR says the Cullinan can ford water up to 21 inches deep but didn’t release information about approach, departure, and breakover angles or other important off-road specs. No performance information like zero-to-60 acceleration was released either. The car weighs 5,800 pounds and sits on 22-inch wheels.
Other tech includes night vision cameras with wildlife and pedestrian warnings, alertness assistant, 360-degree and top-down camera, active cruise control, collision warning, cross-traffic warning, lane departure warning, a head-up display, wifi hotspot capability, five USB ports, wireless phone charging, and more. For the first time, all the instruments are digital and a touchscreen is now included.
RR calls the rear hatch “The Clasp” and it opens in two sections via the key fob. The rear seats also fold down electronically by 1/3 or 2/3 to create a flat load floor, a first for any Rolls-Royce. Cargo capacity in the trunk is 19.8 cubic feet (560 liters) of space or 21.2 (600 L) with the parcel shelf removed and 68.2 cu-ft (1,930 L) with the seats folded flat. The trunk is also separated from my passenger compartment via a glass partition so customers can be in a perfectly climate controlled environment, even when the rear hatch is open. First world problems, indeed.
The Cullinan can be configurated with room for two or three passengers in the back. With the two-seat rear configuration, passengers get access to a rear console with a drinks cabinet.
Rolls-Royce struggles to call the Cullinan an SUV, preferring the pretentious term “all-terrain high-bodied car” instead.
Rolls-Royce decided to stick with the Cullinan name, even though it was reported that it was just a placeholder. The Cullinan is named after the biggest diamond ever found, which is now part of the British Crown Jewels.
The level of over-the-top features and attention to detail is what you’d expect from RR — from a picnic table in the tailgate to champagne cooler to jewelry-like switchgear and even a bespoke “recreation module” that can be tailored for any hobby or sport. Of course, being a Rolls-Royce, the opportunities to create a bespoke car are endless for fortunate enough customers.
Pricing hasn’t been announced, but it will likely be around $400,000, which would make it the most expensive production SUV in history (it will definitely be pricier than the Bentley Bentayga). Expect many special edition models to be released as well. The Cullinan will likely go on sale toward the end of this year.
a version of this article first appeared on AutoGuide