The New Rolls-Royce Black Badge Cullinan Series II is Revealed

May 09, 2024 at 08:05 PM
The New Rolls-Royce Black Badge Cullinan Series II is Revealed
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Rolls-Royce’s disruptive alter ego, Black Badge, reached its apotheosis in Cullinan where its assertive and uncompromising attitude appeals to clients who seek the boldest forms of self-expression. Today, the marque presents a clear evolution of this subversive motor car with Black Badge Cullinan Series II.

 

 

BLACK BADGE CULLINAN SERIES II: EXTERIOR

Black Badge Cullinan Series II asserts its presence with an impactful front-end treatment. The principal differentiator is the lower air intake design. These geometrical pieces incorporate widened veins, signalling the motor car’s more urgent dynamic character. Above this is the marque’s iconic Pantheon grille, which has been illuminated for the first time across Cullinan and Black Badge Cullinan Series II. For Black Badge, the grille is finished in the series’ hallmark Black, though a silver ‘horizon line’ creates a sense of breadth and solidity while framing the motor car’s vertical daytime running lights. For clients wishing to fully cloak their motor car in darkness, this is also available in an all-black finish.

All exterior body detail elements and brightwork, including the Spirit of Ecstasy figurine, are also finished in Black. For the first time in the history of Black Badge, this now extends from the window surrounds and door spears to the door handles. Each piece is hand-prepared by the marque’s artisans: first, a light abrasive is used across the handle to provide a ‘key’ for a hardwearing primer, onto which four coats of Black paint are then applied. After curing, these pieces are individually polished to ensure that they match the rich, high-gloss coachwork of Black Badge Cullinan Series II.

 
 

Other darkened elements, including the rear tailgate and bumper accents as well as the motor car’s exhausts, are treated with a specific chrome electrolyte to achieve the mirror-black effect. This is introduced to the traditional chrome plating process and co-deposited on the stainless-steel substrate, darkening the finish. Its final thickness is just one micrometre – around one-hundredth of the width of a human hair. Each of these components is precision-polished by hand to achieve a mirror-black chrome finish before it is fitted to the motor car.

Black Badge Cullinan Series II clients are now able to extend exterior colours to all lower body surfaces, as well as the subtly enhanced lower sill, valances, and lower front bumper – a treatment reserved for Black Badge Cullinan Series II. This visually lowers the motor car, creating a more dynamic statement that further amplifies its monolithic form.

The exterior treatment is completed with 23-inch wheels – the first time wheels of this size have been offered by the marque for a Black Badge motor car. From a distance, the design appears to consist of five spokes finished in gloss-black and silver. In fact, there are 10 interwoven spokes: the visual effect is created by a carefully-orchestrated interplay between polished, painted and recessed, negative surfaces. The design also allows a clear view of the Black Badge disc brake callipers, shown in a signature Red, which can also be finished in Black, Turchese, Mandarin, or Forge Yellow.

 

 

BLACK BADGE CULLINAN SERIES II: A SUBVERSIVE INTERIOR TREATMENT

Advanced, technical materials have become a hallmark of Black Badge Rolls-Royce motor cars. For Black Badge Cullinan Series II, this theme continues. Clients expressed their appreciation of the original Black Badge Cullinan’s Technical Carbon finish – on this basis, this exquisite material has been retained for Series II. The naked-weave carbon-fibre finish has been developed to create a precise repeating pattern of geometrical shapes that create a three-dimensional effect. Each leaf of Technical Carbon is finished with six coats of lacquer before being left to cure for 72 hours then all 23 pieces are hand-polished to a mirror finish. This process takes 21 days in total.

If Individual Rear Seats are commissioned, clients can include the Black Badge family motif, known as the infinity symbol, onto the rear Technical Carbon ‘Waterfall’ section that separates the rear reclining seats and conceals the Cullinan Series II Champagne cooler. This delicate aluminium piece is placed between the third and fourth layer of six layers of subtly tinted lacquer, creating the illusion that the symbol is floating above the Technical Carbon. In Lounge Seat configuration, the infinity symbol is embroidered.

The seats themselves are available to commission in the marque’s stunning new Duality Twill textile, a new rayon fabric made from bamboo and inspired by the extensive bamboo grove in Le Jardin des Méditerranées on the Côte d'Azur, which neighbours Sir Henry Royce’s former winter home, Villa Mimosa. The twill textile is embroidered with an artistic ‘Duality’ graphic. Based on an abstract interpretation of the two interlinked letter R initials of the marque’s founders, the design reflects a clear nautical influence, reminiscent of the interweaving rope lines found on sailing yachts – another subtle allusion to the French Riviera.

 
 

A complete Duality Twill interior of the intricately embroidered textile incorporates up to 2.2 million stitches and 11 miles of thread. This exquisite material can be further dramatised with bold Bespoke colourways, further enhancing this remarkable new finish for Black Badge clients.

Placed Perforation seating can also be incorporated into this bold expression of Cullinan. Up to 107,000 0.8- and 1.2-millimetre perforations are made onto the seat leather, creating an abstract pattern, inspired by the constantly changing shapes and shadows of the clouds over the Home of Rolls-Royce at Goodwood in the twilight hours.

The dark ambience of Black Badge continues with the interior metals. Air vent surrounds on the dashboard and in the rear cabin are darkened using physical vapour deposition, a method of colouring metal that does not discolour or tarnish over time or through repeated use.

The subversive design principles of Black Badge motor cars have also been applied to Cullinan Series II’s unique Clock Cabinet. This inset vitrine displays both an analogue timepiece and an up-lit Spirit of Ecstasy figurine. The Spirit of Ecstasy is constructed from solid stainless steel and rendered in Black, recalling the figure that sits on the prow of Black Badge Cullinan Series II. The Clock Cabinet is flanked by Cullinan’s new Illuminated Fascia, which displays an ethereal glowing infinity symbol within the new vertical Cityscape pattern.

Black Badge Cullinan Series II is also the stage for an exclusive digital Bespoke treatment, with instrument dials now available in four neo-futuristic colourways: Vivid Grellow, Neon Nights, Cyan Fire and the kaleidoscopic-style Synth Wave.

 

 

BLACK BADGE CULLINAN SERIES II: PROVEN ENGINEERING

In Black Badge Cullinan’s first guise, clients requested that the Black Badge experience extended beyond the aesthetic treatment of the motor car. In the five years since its launch, the changes made by Rolls-Royce engineers for the 2019 motor car, which included higher capacity air springs to alleviate body roll and the addition of even greater power reserves, have become integral to this bold motor car’s appeal. Accordingly, these qualities are preserved for Black Badge Cullinan Series II, including the twin-turbocharged 6.75-litre V12 engine, which generates a total output of 600PS, and 900Nm of torque.

To exploit the additional power, the transmission and throttle remain calibrated for more immediate acceleration. The ZF eight-speed gearbox and both front- and rear-steered axles work together to adjust the levels of feedback to the driver, depending on throttle and steering inputs without compromising the motor car’s effortless ‘magic carpet ride’ experience.

Depressing the ‘Low’ button on the gear selection stalk continues to unlock further Black Badge technologies. When activated, drivers experience a change in tone and volume from the Bespoke Black Badge exhaust system, signalling that all of the 900Nm torque reserves are available from 1700rpm – just 700rpm above tick-over. Low Mode also increases the speed of gear shifts by 50% when the throttle is depressed to 90%. To fully exploit Black Badge Cullinan Series II, the brake pedal travel has been decreased to create a more immediate response to driver inputs.

 

 

A BOLD BESPOKE TREATMENT

Like its predecessor, Black Badge Cullinan Series II defines a distinct attitude and aesthetic code within the super-luxury sector. The clients who patronise this expression of the brand do so on their own terms – with Black Badge Cullinan Series II, Rolls-Royce signals its ongoing commitment to these individuals’ requirements, and their bold appreciation of luxury.

 

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