Dare to Be Dif­fer­ent

Malaysia Tatler - - LIFE -

Chong Seow Wei

There it was, so charm­ingly glossy and stately: the Rolls-royce Cul­li­nan in the flesh. We had been pa­tiently wait­ing for this launch for three years, ever since Rolls-royce Mo­tor Cars an­nounced in 2015 that it would be in­tro­duc­ing an en­tirely new “high-bod­ied” model. We were fi­nally in­vited to a pri­vate pre­view of the car in April within the con­fines of a pri­vate mu­seum in Bei­jing, but weren’t al­lowed to share any in­for­ma­tion un­til its world pre­miere on May 10. As such, se­cu­rity was tight—we were chauf­feured to the se­cret lo­ca­tion, and upon ar­rival, our smart­phones were sealed in an opaque plas­tic bag to pre­vent pic­tures of the car from be­ing taken and leaked out. In re­cent years, lux­ury mar­ques such as Lam­borgh­ini and Bent­ley have re­leased their own SUVS, but the Cul­li­nan is hardly the re­sult of this up­ward trend—rolls-royce has never been one to fol­low the con­voy, any­way. Util­i­tar­ian Rolls-royces have ex­isted in the Good­wood-based mar­que’s his­tory, then-de­sign di­rec­tor Giles Tay­lor told us at the pre­view. (Tay­lor has since left the com­pany abruptly less than a month later.) Cases in point: Sil­ver Ghosts driven by Ma­hara­jahs and Ma­ha­ra­nis across In­dia and through jun­gles in the early 1900s, and the fleet of Rolls-royces trans­formed into ar­moured war ve­hi­cles years later by Bri­tish com­man­ders rid­ing across north­ern Europe and into China, Rus­sia and the Mid­dle East. In other words, Rolls-royce had read­ily avail­able sources of in­spi­ra­tion to build more util­i­tar­ian cars that could eas­ily

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