Rolls-Royce has confirmed that they’ll be entering the luxury SUV market, but apart from that, very few details have been revealed. This week, however, we’ve found out that the car has a name, and that name is Cullinan.
We’re sure you were expecting something a little more prestigious and grandiose, but if the name doesn’t ring a bell, it alludes to the Cullinan diamond, the largest gem-quality ever found. The diamond, discovered in 1905 in South Africa, was named after Sir Thomas Cullinan, the owner of the mine. The Great Star of Africa is the largest polished gem cut from the stone, and sits on top of St. Edward’s Sceptre amongst England’s crown jewels.
You can start to see where Rolls-Royce is going with this.
The name was revealed by former Rolls-Royce Chairman and current BMW head of Sales and Marketing Ian Robertson in an interview with Auto Express. Robertson stated that the name is currently a code name and is not guaranteed to stick. He also explained that the SUV will be positioned beneath the Phantom, as “The Phantom always has to be the pinnacle.”
The Cullinan is also likely to share the Phantom’s lightweight aluminum space frame, this indicating that it could also house the luxury sedan’s V12 engine.
Rumors of a Rolls-Royce SUV have been bandied about for years, but in response to Rival Bentley moving forward with its own luxury utility vehicle, the now-named Bentayga, Chairman Peter Schwarzenbauer put rumors to rest. An open letter from the chairman confirmed that an SUV that would meet the standards of the company would be made, and that the likely lauch period would be 2017.