2020 Rolls-Royce Cullinan Black Badge review: Stealth standout

This is really the pinnacle of luxury SUVs. Steven Ewing/Roadshow In spite of what you

This is really the pinnacle of luxury SUVs.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

In spite of what you may assume from its name, you will find a lot more to this Rolls-Royce Cullinan than some black paint and darkish-chrome end. Absolutely sure, the Black Badge therapy mainly caters to folks who want all the lavishness of a 6-determine SUV with a a little a lot more underneath-the-radar approach. But I am going to really argue that the greatest thing about this SUV is not what you can see, it is what you are not able to.


  • Has every luxury function you could at any time want
  • Clean, potent V12 engine
  • Excellent to push, greater to be pushed in
  • Black Badge styling is delicate and stylish

Will not Like

  • Clunky infotainment tech with no Apple CarPlay or Android Automobile
  • I are not able to afford a single

For starters, the 6.75-liter V12 engine gets a tiny but apparent improve in energy, many thanks to an Ecu reflash. The normal Cullinan places out a not-insubstantial 563 horsepower and 627 pound-feet of torque, but the Black Badge ups that to 592 hp and 664 lb-ft. You can find a sport push location, far too — activated by pressing the “Reduced” button on the equipment stalk — that increases throttle response and unlocks a a lot more aggressive shift logic for the eight-velocity automated transmission.

It really is effective, far too the Black Badge Cullinan has some newfound pep in its action. You can come to feel the included energy underneath acceleration, and I like how the transmission is a lot more than eager to instantly fall a equipment or two when I lay into the throttle. The Black Badge gets a new exhaust process, with a type of aural playfulness you wouldn’t expect from a manufacturer that is ordinarily so buttoned up. It’s going to capture you off guard at very first, but I assure, those people pops and burbles are coming from the Cullinan, not some other car or truck.

With great energy comes great duty, and Rolls-Royce fits the Black Badge Cullinan with a larger sized set of brake discs to deliver anything to a halt in a hurry. Diminished pedal vacation and an improved bite position make halting this 6,000-pound behemoth significantly less of an event, far too. I am not sure how I come to feel about the red-painted calipers below, which are evidently non-negotiable, but I have to imagine Rolls-Royce is eager to bend the procedures for consumers who throw sufficient income at the issue.

The Cullinan’s air suspension gets a stiffer default location for Black Badge responsibility, and though it does lessen physique motions a teensy bit though cornering, I am not likely to attempt and persuade you that this SUV is quickly a canyon carver. The steering is gentle and effortless, and you can come to feel every a single of the aforementioned 6,000 pounds when you chuck this big boy into a corner.

This is not even the greatest seat in the household.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

Fortunately, none of this included verve comes at the price of overall journey quality. Black Badge or not, this is nevertheless a Rolls-freaking-Royce, and no matter if you are blasting down the highway or just toddling together in visitors by Beverly Hills, it is as clean and relaxed and quiet and lovely as any car or truck proudly carrying a Spirit of Ecstasy on its prow. Driver-aid capabilities like adaptive cruise handle and lane-maintaining aid make an presently serene working experience even significantly less demanding. Blissfully isolated from the earth outside the house, the Cullinan really makes you and your passengers come to feel like the rich aristocrats you are.

What else does the Black Badge spec get you? The Spirit of Ecstasy hood ornament, grille and some trim pieces are completed in large-gloss black chrome, and those people big, red brake calipers are set at the rear of a special set of 22-inch wheels. Relocating inside of, Rolls-Royce’s “technological fiber” trim comes normal — assume of it as 3D-glance carbon fiber — and you can purchase the SUV with a new Forge Yellow inside alternative, which this check car or truck has. The loaded, yellow hue on the leather seats and wool flooring mats undoubtedly is not for all people, but I variety of dig it. Just be sure to continue to keep those people mats clean up.

The Black Badge also signifies the very first time Rolls-Royce is presenting its starlight headliner in the Cullinan. Also offered on the Ghost, Phantom and Wraith, this tremendous-cool function makes use of 1,344 fiber-optic lights embedded in the headliner to deliver the evening sky inside of the car or truck. You can find a dimmer switch so you can increase or lower the intensity, and a “capturing star” result is effective as you’d consider, sending very little zips of gentle from facet to facet. If that is not sufficient, Rolls-Royce will even personalized-tailor the headliner so its design signifies any part of the evening sky as it would’ve looked on a specific day or from a precise put. Sure, really. (For long run press car or truck ordering, Rolls-Royce, I’d like the sky as noticed from Detroit, Michigan on Feb. 26, 1986.)

Sure, you can purchase it in colours other than black.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

Anything else that is exclusive about the Cullinan is not special to the Black Badge. The inside is exquisite to behold and all the resources come to feel fantastic. The switches and buttons have great tactility, and you will find a fulfilling bodyweight to the action of the metallic air vent plungers. The heated, massaging seats coddle you like almost nothing else out there. From the automated door-near buttons to the heated, massaging seats to the chilled, crystal champagne flutes in the compartment in between the rear thrones, the Cullinan is one hundred% Rolls-Royce opulence.

Quick as it is to get wrapped up in all that luxury, there are a few of sore spots I have to have to deal with. The cargo spot is scaled-down than you’d assume, and the nifty slide-out tailgate seats on this tester (which are very cool, I assure you) take up fairly a bit of space. The Cullinan’s multimedia process offers its very own set of head aches, far too. It is fundamentally a reskinned version of BMW’s older iDrive 6 tech, which is to some degree clunky to use, and lacks support for Apple CarPlay or Android Automobile. For a corporation so targeted on easygoing motoring, this included bit of in-car or truck pressure is a downer.

Heading the Black Badge route will set you back an excess $fifty seven,000 about the normal Cullinan’s $325,000 asking price tag, and by the time you get it optioned just the way you like it, get ready to commit at least $425,000 or so, all-in. That is a lot of income for plebs like you and I, but bear in mind, no a single is stretching their price range to set a Cullinan in their driveway. For these folks, spending an excess $57K on the Black Badge is a no-brainer. And good for them, because it is a worthwhile upgrade that makes an presently decadent SUV even greater.