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Cullinan: The Rolls-Royce of SUVs is now in the Philippines

Rolls-Royce and its trademark Spirit of Ecstasy has been the symbol of luxury and excellence for more than a hundred years now. The marque has become a universally accepted benchmark not only in the automotive industry but in almost everything else. Manufacturers often flaunt their products as “the Rolls-Royce of…” to emphasize its superiority or its luxurious advantages over its competition.

Symbols of luxury and excellence: the Rolls-Royce Double R trademark…

…and the Spirit of Ecstasy hood ornament.

Thus, when Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Manila announced that they will be introducing “the Rolls-Royce of SUVs” at the Manila Polo Club last March 13, 2019, they got our full attention. And upon its unveiling, the ultra-luxurious Rolls-Royce Cullinan sparkled like the world’s largest diamond, from which it was named after.

Miguelito Jose, GM of Rolls Royce Motor Cars Manila

Miguelito Jose, the General Manager of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Manila was ecstatic with the introduction of the world’s most luxurious SUV to the Philippines. Willy Tee Ten, President of the Autohub Group, the authorized distributors of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars in the country, was equally beaming with pride. “Filipinos have a profound affinity for sport utility vehicles (SUV) because of out terrain and our lifestyles”, said Tee Ten. “The Cullinan is the Rolls-Royce that our customers have been waiting for – one that is perfectly suited for our market with its unmistakable presence on- and off-road. This is the super-luxury car that will set the new benchmark for the high-end SUV segment, an all-purpose Rolls-Royce for the captains of industry.”

Willy Tee Ten, President of the Autohub Group of Companies

The unveiling…

… of the Rolls-Royce of luxury SUVs, the Cullinan.

Effortless, Everywhere

Sven Grunwald, Asia Pacific Regional Product Manager for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, guided the audience through Rolls-Royce’s most anticipated new model. “The Cullinan will be at the pinnacle of luxury here in the Philippines, with Bespoke capabilities that will complement the varied lifestyles of our highly successful customers”, he said. “It is the ultra premium SUV that will redefine luxury travel as ‘Effortless, Everywhere‘. As with all Rolls-Royce motor cars moving forward, Cullinan is underpinned by a platform called the ‘Architecture of Luxury’ wholly unique to the brand, which accords the car a level of performance, comfort and refinement never before seen in the SUV segment.”

Sven Grunwald, Asia Pacific Regional Product Manager for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars

The Cullinan features a bold, functional and dynamic design language. The traditional Rolls-Royce Pantheon grille, topped by the iconic Spirit of Ecstasy, is placed on a chamfered edge while deep-set Laser headlights and brow-shaped LEDs cast up to 600 meters of illumination for maximum visibility. Viewed at the side, the 1,836-millimeter tall Cullinan is endowed with a large glass-to-metal ratio, like the luxury carriages of royalties, while the 22-inch wheels provide a visual strength and robustness. Rolls-Royce designers used a Saxon spear-like metal element to optically divide and add depth to the Cullinan’s side profile.

At the back, two narrow upright tail lamps, adorned with minimal strips of jewelry at their center, flank a dual-opening lift gate and tail gate. Exposed metal exhaust pipes and skid plates provide further proof of this Roll-Royce’s ruggedness, durability, and off-road capability.

A Practical Rolls-Royce?

The Cullinan has two interior options: First, the five-seat Lounge seating version which accommodates three passengers in the the back seat. The rear seats fold down electronically completely to provide a flat load area or in a 2/3 and 1/3 splits to accommodate passengers and cargo. Rear passengers can still travel with a long load, or use the carpeted seat back as an occasional table on which to rest their precious personal items. The rear compartment offers 560 liters of space or up to 600 liters with the parcel shelf removed. With both rear seats folded, the loading length is 2245mm and the load capacity increases further to 1,930 liters – one of the largest in the luxury SUV segment.

The other configuration is the four-seat Individual Seat where two individual rear seats are separated by a fixed rear center console, which contains a drinks cabinet with Rolls-Royce whisky glasses and decanter at the front, and champagne flutes and refrigerator in the rear. The seats feature ventilation and massage functions, and can be adjusted over a number of planes to offer ultimate comfort for rear seat passengers over longer journeys. A truly unique glass partition behind the rear seat isolates the passenger cabin from the luggage compartment, resulting in some of the lowest levels of noise recorded in an SUV cabin and a four-zone climate control system where the Cullinan’s occupants are immune from temperature changes even when the luggage compartment is open.

Technology Galore

On activation via its bespoke key, the Cullinan lowers itself by 40mm to make entry effortless through segment-unique coach doors. Passengers are greeted by wide aperture, electronically-closing doors with touch sensitive door handles. The passengers are pampered by an industry-leading panoramic glass roof while optional studio-grade 18-channel, 18-speaker Bespoke audio system, touch-screen operated video entertainment systems, and Rolls-Royce’s signature picnic tables further enhance the level of luxury. The Cullinan’s peerless safety features include Night Vision and Vision Assist including daytime and night-time Wildlife & 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; an industry leading 7″x 3″ High-Resolution Head-Up Display, WiFi hotspot, and the latest Navigation systems.

Impeccable Engineering

The Rolls-Royce engineers equipped the Cullinan with a unique all-aluminium architecture called the Architecture of Luxury that delivers extraordinary body stiffness for exceptional performance on rough terrain. Meanwhile, the Magic Carpet Ride that Rolls-Royce is famous for, is carried on by the latest generation of self-leveling four-corner air suspension and sophisticated all-wheel drive and all-wheel steering systems. Electronically-controlled air springs use a powerful compression system to actively push down any wheel when the system detects loss of traction, thus ensuring every wheel is constantly in contact with the ground and power is delivered to all wheels as required. At 540mm, the Cullinan delivers the deepest wading depth of any super-luxury SUV, but we doubt if anyone will want to drive their Rolls-Royce over floodwaters.

True to its Effortless, Everywhere battle cry, this Rolls-Royce luxury SUV possesses an Everywhere button, which offers four different programs within the off-road driving mode in addition to Hill Descent and suspension height controls. Power comes from a completely reworked 6.75-liter twin-turbo Rolls-Royce V12 engine that produces 850Nm of torque from 1,600 rpm and mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission. An off-road trip will never mess up the interior and its pampered occupants, though. Both the front and rear coach doors wrap low under the sill of Cullinan, ensuring that all dirt remains outside the door.

Bespoke Cullinan Availability

The Rolls-Royce Cullinan that was presented to the local motoring media at the Manila Polo Club is finished in Sapphire Black with a Cobalto Blue Double Coachline. Its interior is upholstered with a two-tone Selby Grey / Navy Blue leather combination, and an open-pore Circassian Walnut veneer.

Discerning Rolls-Royce customers can personalize their Cullinan through the marque’s unique Bespoke program. The Cullinan is now available for order in the Philippines, with the first customer deliveries beginning in Q2 2019. As for the price, let’s just say it’s worth a million dollars. But, if you have to ask…