Rolls-Royce has given its Cullinan the Black Badge treatment, which includes more menacing styling and yet more power from the twin-turbo V12.
Having debuted the Black Badge on the Wraith and Ghost in 2016 (and adding the Dawn in 2017), the reveal of the Cullinan variant effectively completes the family.
The 6,75-litre twin-turbocharged V12 gains not only an extra 21 kW and 50 N.m (for new peak outputs of 441 kW and 900 N.m) but also an “entirely new” exhaust system with a more sinister aural signature. The ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic transmission, too, has been tweaked, as have various suspension and braking components.
The British firm expects the majority of buyers to specify the Black Badge’s signature hue (it is, as you've no doubt worked out, black), which comprises multiple layers of paint and lacquer “meticulously applied and hand-polished ten times”. The Spirit of Ecstasy mascot, meanwhile, is presented in high-gloss black chrome, a finish that extends to its mounting plate.
The Rolls-Royce badges scattered around the exterior are silver-on-black, while chrome surfaces such as the front grille surround, boot handle and tailpipes are also darkened. Black Badge models furthermore gain model-specific 22-inch alloy wheels, which frame high-gloss red brake callipers.
Inside, you’ll find a naked-weave carbon-fibre finish that repeats geometrical shapes to produce what the company calls a “powerful three-dimensional effect”. Of course, there’s also a fresh version of the firm’s trademark “starlight headliner”, which takes the form of black leather hand-woven with 1 344 fibre optic lights.
Ryan has spent most of his career in online media, writing about everything from sport to politics and other forms of crime. But his true passion – reignited by a 1971 Austin Mini Mk3 still tucked lifeless in a dark corner of his garage – is of the automotive variety.