Described as a ‘mule’, the Rolls-Royce ‘Cullinan’ is based on the Phantom II and is to be used by Rolls-Royce to perfect the final suspension system. The nature of the testing is explained: “The first series of tests will focus on Project Cullinan’s on-road behaviour from suspension throw to high-bodied stability, using the first iteration of the newly designed suspension system. The result will be “effortless…everywhere.”
‘Cullinan’ is a working title; named after the largest gem-quality diamond ever to be discovered. A name for this new SUV will be announced at a later date. Torsten Müller-Ötvös (Rolls-Royce CEO) said: “I am proud to confirm that we are developing an all-new, high-bodied Rolls-Royce. I’m confident it will deliver on our brand’s promise of supreme luxury while being effortless everywhere.”
High-bodied, here, is the euphemism for SUV. Rolls-Royce is aiming for a 4×4 to be the ultimate flagship for the brand which will more than likely be led by the Phantom. The 4×4 has seen an increase in sales for new customers.
A sizeable SUV, the Cullinan gem with its V12 6.8 litre engine will run smoothly and stealthily as with any Rolls.
Rolls-Royce is working on the future: this new SUV; a new 2020 Phantom; and a new 2020 Ghost. The question is raised, which will arrive first? This new SUV or the 2020 Phantom?
Sales and Marketing manager Ian Robertson said of the flagship Phantom: “In my opinion, the halo will remain as the Phantom, because history has always pointed at large sedans as the most desirable cars. We live in a changing world, of course, and this may be the shifting point, but I expect the traditional Rolls-Royce order to remain.”
Rolls-Royce describe their Phantom as: A commanding presence, Phantom Family encapsulates contemporary luxury. Its signature design is complemented by modern features, with the potential to personalise it to the smallest detail. Born of the desire to build The Best Car in the World, Phantom is the result of complete creative and engineering freedom.
2020 will have Rolls-Royce fans analysing whether the new SUV and the new Phantom truly fit into the diamond category as ‘The Best Car in the World’.