Sorry, SUV Haters: Rolls-Royce's Cullinan Is The Best Car Ever Made

When you combine Rolls-Royce's inimitable approach to luxury with 563bhp, family practicality and off-road ability to match a Range Rover, you reach the motor car's new peak
Sorry, SUV Haters: Rolls-Royce's Cullinan Is The Best Car Ever Made

Rolls-Royce and SUVs could, on the face of it, be as diametrically opposed as it gets. Rolls-Royce is the pinnacle of luxury British motoring, an icon of class and stoicism above all else.

SUVs, on the other hand, are the virulent, fashion-based product of a twisted automotive class system where higher equals better – excluding vans and trucks, of course. There’s something… common about SUVs. Something about it has already devalued in the same way that if everyone was a millionaire, the word would cease to have any meaning.

Sorry, SUV Haters: Rolls-Royce's Cullinan Is The Best Car Ever Made

And yet, here is the Rolls-Royce Cullinan. The product of a car-buying customer demand for a high-riding, rough stuff-capable machine that somehow encapsulates the finest airs and graces of Edwardian-era Great Britain and teams them not only with the outstanding technical prowess developed through the 2010s, but also its most infectious and omnipresent design trends.

Let’s face it, SUVs are now everywhere. Ford has even culled almost all of its North American cars because people don’t want them any more. They want the same cars, but on stilts. You can buy SUV-ified city cars, family cars and business cars. The SUV, once a sign that you lived on a farm and needed something you could hose out at the end of the day, has become absolutely derivative.

Sorry, SUV Haters: Rolls-Royce's Cullinan Is The Best Car Ever Made

Whatever you think of it, SUVs are the new centre of gravity. The new normal. The Cullinan is a response to that; a conscious effort to keep Rolls’ products current in a world where everyone from the minimum wage worker to the wealthiest oil baron wants an SUV. Persevering with saloons, however lovely, was the wrong choice.

This, then, was the right choice: to build the first four-wheel drive Rolls-Royce SUV ever. And, well, I quite like it. You could argue that from some angles it doesn’t really look like a car worth several hundred thousand pounds and I’d agree with you, but I’ve been staring at the press shots and I can’t find a bad angle. The slabby styling that was so ugly on the first BMW-era Phantom works better here. The proportions seem neat and the overall feel hits the nail on the head. I can easily picture one doing some very un-Rolls-ish driving through searing deserts or sweaty jungles.

Sorry, SUV Haters: Rolls-Royce's Cullinan Is The Best Car Ever Made

That said, it’s no mere styling exercise. Suspension that actively pushes a lifted, spinning wheel into the ground for extra traction, adjustable air suspension and a suite of exciting and everyday-useful technologies are signs that this is the Rolls-Royce that will see more actual use than any other before it.

Unless you count the ridiculous legroom offered by the current Phantom, we don’t see any compromises to the Cullinan, either. Fair enough, there’s the faint whiff of fashion hanging over it, but it’s set to be every bit as comfortable as a Rolls-Royce should be. Add to that the kind of desperately privileged features that simply aren’t possible in a saloon, like the Viewing Suite for when you’re watching Tarquin and Arabella playing polo.

Sorry, SUV Haters: Rolls-Royce's Cullinan Is The Best Car Ever Made

There’s something undeniably exciting about this car; something most mud-shy lifted hatchbacks masquerading as SUVs lack. It carries with it a sense of freedom that the stuffier Rolls saloons have always lacked. A Rolls-Royce that you can drive – or be driven in – to anywhere in the paved world is a fine thing, but a Rolls-Royce that can blend obscene comfort with the ability to traverse just about any environment on earth is simply untouchable.

Other off-roaders may still have the measure of it in extreme situations. A Phantom may still have the edge in terms of outright Monaco hotel arrival class. But nothing that’s on sale today can get anywhere near the scope of the Cullinan’s pantheon of talents. Whatever your feelings on SUVs in general, this is probably the best car ever made.


Ali Mahfooz

Just wait for the oil prices to go up at record high. Then watch these turn up on Craigslist for bargains. 😂

05/12/2018 - 14:20 |
180 | 14

Correct me if I’m wrong but is the Cullinan based off the upcoming BMW X7 platform? If so that would be a safe way to introduce a luxury SUV into the market.

05/12/2018 - 14:21 |
10 | 0

Since when do Rolls Royce owner give a damn about fuel price?

05/12/2018 - 15:36 |
138 | 0
Soni Redx (MD Squad Leader) (Subie Squad Leader)

In reply to by Ali Mahfooz

and what about the price its being sold for..?

05/12/2018 - 17:05 |
2 | 0

New price in 2018 - about 500000£
2020 - 250000£
2030 - 50000£
2040 - here have it for free

05/12/2018 - 19:39 |
42 | 4

Ever made? There must be sensible arguments in the article and before ct hater come and downvote i’ll say it i haven’t read the article. Putting a SUV and best car ever made in the same title is a mistake. SUV are the new normal? Where… In small handrake land? In manual are bad ville?

05/12/2018 - 14:22 |
52 | 12

I’ll add something that make sense to me now and i hope will keep making sense when i will come back to this post in a few days. The best car ever made will be the one that don’t go against physics.

05/12/2018 - 14:27 |
4 | 4

In my perspective there is no true definition of “The Best” or “The Worst” and it all comes down to an individuals preferences.

05/13/2018 - 02:46 |
6 | 0

How on earth is this the best car ever made? With its horrible styling (especially from the rear), lower quality interior than other Rolls, and absurd price tag, I could think of hundreds of cars that would take that title before this thing. Best car? No. Best SUV? Still probably not, because we have the bentayga which is much better looking and has a nicer interior.

05/12/2018 - 14:51 |
20 | 4

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Have you been in the damn car, have you felt the interior of a ROLLS ROYCE, a car that’s regarded as the most luxurious in the world

Pictures don’t show the whole image (pun intended)

That’s like saying Lamborghini isn’t the most sportiest car ever

05/12/2018 - 15:06 |
14 | 10

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)


05/12/2018 - 16:17 |
2 | 2

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

It’s DougScore would be about 60-70. So yeah far from the best car ever…

05/12/2018 - 19:32 |
8 | 2

It’s basically a Phantom, with a higher centre of mass. And to stop it from rolling over, the suspension would have to be slightly stiffer, making it less comfortable. And while it can go off-road, the simple fact is that the only Cullinan’s which will ever go off-road are the press cars. Its only going to be used as a luxury car on the road.

Put simply, it is not the best car ever made.

05/12/2018 - 14:51 |
34 | 6

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

my problem with “offroad capable” modern SUVs is the same.
everyone says they can offroad but the most offroad is the smooth gravel path to their homes.
but at least the cullinan looks to have some decent clearing.
and the higher centre of mass doesn’t matter because no-one in their right mind would drive these in a way where that would be a problem.

05/12/2018 - 23:30 |
2 | 0
Jia the Supra Fanboy

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

about the offroad thing, seriously stop.

stop. equating. vehicle capability. with. general usage.

they are NOT the same damn thing. Just because a supercar’s going 10 km/h in a parking lot doesn’t mean it can’t do 350 km/h on a nice stretch of road.

Also, the actual objective difference in the feeling of ride comfort between the Phantom and this vehicle is probably close to undetectable with human senses, let alone the senses of some millionaire who isn’t even paying attention to the car they’re being driven around in. But what is easily detectable is the “superior perspective” felt when you sit higher up, which more than likely outweighs the relatively miniscule difference in ride comfort.

05/13/2018 - 07:11 |
2 | 2

It looks soo

b u r l e y…

05/12/2018 - 14:58 |
6 | 0


05/12/2018 - 15:04 |
2 | 4
Mandalore the Ultimate

What a well written article. Saying that this is the best car ever made, without any basis towards your statement is probably going to be the dumbest thing I hear all day. (See what I did there?)

05/12/2018 - 15:06 |
10 | 2

Who would take this offroading?

05/12/2018 - 15:13 |
0 | 0

It kinda shows how hypocritical car community is. When Benatayga came out everyone was “Oh God it sucks”, now Rolls-Royce SUV comes out everyone is saying how awesome it is.

05/12/2018 - 15:15 |
20 | 2
Rahul 1

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Actually, the Cullinan’s got its fair share of hate as well. Heck, there are people that are starting to realize that the Bentayga is actually better looking. I mean, imo, I think both the Bentayga and Cullinan are great looking as suvs, but other people believe in different things. SUVs are made to be Comfortable, Luxurious, Spacious, etc.

05/12/2018 - 15:22 |
6 | 0

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Where do you see people praising it in the comments ? Lmao

05/12/2018 - 15:31 |
0 | 0

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Bentley tried to give their car an element of sportiness. Rolls-Royce don’t do that.

05/12/2018 - 16:06 |
12 | 0
Tomislav Celić

Honestly, I’d have a Bentayga

05/12/2018 - 15:29 |
10 | 0



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