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The Darkest Black Badge yet – New Black Badge Cullinan

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Rolls-Royce introduced Black Badge with the Wraith and Ghost in 2016, followed by Dawn in 2017 and in 2019 the family is completed with the Black Badge Cullinan.

Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan
Rolls Royce Introduces the first Black Badge Cullinan. Credit:Rolls-Royce
  • Introduced as the darkest, most urban expression of a Black Badge motor car yet
  • First coloured brake caliper from Rolls-Royce
  • 6.75-litre V12 engine now delivers increased power (600PS) and torque (900NM)
  • Drivetrain and chassis re-engineered for enhanced dynamic performance
  • Curated collection debuts striking Forge Yellow leather and Technical Carbon veneer
  • Bespoke alloy wheel introduced in Black Badge house style
  • Infinity lemniscate symbol continues to codify noir expression of Rolls-Royce

Launched in 2018, the original Silver Badge guise of the Cullinan was created to satisfy overwhelming demand from younger, more adventurous clients looking for a super-luxury SUV. If the Silver Badge Cullinan was built to conquer the world’s wildest reaches, then the alter ego Black Badge Cullinan has been built to conquer the urban frontiers.

Front View of the Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan
The darkest Black Badge to date. Credit:Rolls-Royce

The Idea Of Black Badge

Rolls-Royce noted that within its new group of clients a subset of individuals existed who sought to subvert the motor car’s domineering presence, as Rolls-Royce states, “by permanently cloaking it in the night”. Rolls-Royce goes on further to describe them as “men and women who take risks, break rules and build success on their own terms”. Rolls-Royce also gives a hint that the idea of Black Badge didn’t arrive without opposition. “Before we launched Black Badge in 2016 the idea of creating a product that would satisfy this subversive cohort – that is highly dynamic and wilfully rebellious in aesthetic – caused a great deal of internal debate” declares Torsten Müller-Ötvös, the CEO of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.

Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan
Cloaked in the night – Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Darkest Black Badge Version

The Black Badge Cullinan’s multi-layered signature high gloss Black paint is hand polished 10 times, representing the most comprehensive surface finish process ever applied to a solid paint colour. While the black paint will be popular for many, the Black Badge Cullinan can also be coated in any of Rolls-Royce’s 44,000 ‘ready to wear’ colors or commissioned with a completely new bespoke hue.

The Spirit of Ecstasy mascot is presented in high gloss black chrome and for the first time this finish extends onto its mounting plate, creating the darkest Black Badge yet.

Other darkened features include the ‘Double R’ badge on the front, flanks and aft which invert to become silver-on-black, while chrome surfaces such as the front grille surround, side frame finishers, boot handle, boot trim, lower air inlet finisher and exhaust pipes are darkened. While they appear black, the vertical grille bars remain polished, reflecting the blackened surfaces that surround them.

Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan Wheels
All new 22 inch rims especially reserved for Black Badge Cullinan. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Black Badge Cullinan is further enhanced by all-new 22-inch forged alloy wheels, reserved exclusively for Black Badge Cullinan. Lurking behind these are Rolls-Royce’s first ever coloured brake calipers. The high gloss Red paint has been specifically developed to withstand the rigors of elevated temperatures generated by the motor car’s uprated braking system while still offering a perfectly smooth finish befitting of Rolls-Royce. To help driver confidence when exploiting the Black Badge Cullinan’s increased power, the braking bite point has been raised and pedal travel decreased. Redesigned brake disc ventilation also allows consistency in these changes while braking at elevated temperatures.

As we delve inside the cabin of the Black Badge Cullinan, the now iconic Starlight Headliner intensifies the cabin’s ambience by casting a low light over the lavish leather seats. Presented in fine Black leather, handwoven with 1344 fibre optic lights, it is a true reflection of the sky at night and incorporates eight brilliant white shooting stars that dart at random predominantly over the front occupants, subtly acknowledging the Cullinan’s owner-driver appeal.

Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan Starlight Headliner
1344 fibre optic lights and 8 shooting stars intensify the ambience. Credit: Rolls-Royce

What Is Technical Carbon?

Inside their cars, Rolls-Royce usually go to lengths to remove any notion or sense of the raw mechanical function of the motor vehicle. However, for the Black badge Cullinan, Rolls-Royce’s Colour and Trim experts wanted to gently sensationalise the engineering substance of Black Badge, but asked themselves, how should this be done?

In the spirit of Sir Henry Royce’s founding philosophy, “When it does not exist, design it”, a collaboration between the marque’s designers, engineers and craftspeople saw the creation of a new luxury material called Technical Carbon.

Inspired by masterpieces of urban architecture, a naked-weave carbon-fibre finish was developed to create highly accurate repeating geometrical shapes that produced a powerful three-dimensional effect.

Each leaf of Technical Carbon is finished with six coats of lacquer before being left to cure for 72 hours then hand-polished to Rolls-Royce’s hallmark mirror finish. This process takes 21 days and is only deemed complete once every piece is inspected by a craftsperson to ensure complete reflective uniformity across each of the 23 pieces within the car’s interior.

Rolls Royce’s Technical Carbon takes 21 days to manufacture. Credit: Rolls-Royce
Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan Dashboard
Inside the Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan. Credit: Rolls-Royce

The Infinity Motif

The Black Badge contains symbolism of the mathematical symbol that represents a potential infinity, which is placed discreetly within the motor car’s interior. This marking, also known as the lemniscate, was applied to Sir Malcolm Campbell’s record-breaking Rolls-Royce-powered Blue Bird K3 hydroplane, denoting that it belonged to an insurance class reserved for boats with unlimited and therefore infinite engine power. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars states it “selected this hallmark for Black Badge to reflect its own unrelenting pursuit of power”. Within the car’s interior, the Infinity lemniscate motif is embroidered into the fold-down rear arm-rest, incorporated in the illuminated treadplates and engraved on the brushed and darkened steel clock case.

Sir Malcolm Campbell’s record-breaking Rolls-Royce-powered Blue Bird K3 hydroplane was also celebrated by Rolls-Royce with the planned limited edition production run of 35 Phantom Drophead Coupes revealed in 2014. The unique models were to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Sir Malcolm Campbell’s last water speed record, which occurred in 1939.

Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan Rear Seats
the Infinity lemniscate motif on the fold-down rear arm rest. Credit: Rolls-Royce
Sir Malcolm Campbell's Bluebird K3 hydroplane
Sir Malcolm Campbell’s Bluebird K3 hydroplane.

Black Badge Cullinan Engineering & Power

Key to the visceral thrill of Black Badge Cullinan is the Architecture of Luxury, Rolls-Royce’s proprietary all-aluminium architecture that debuted with Phantom. The sub-structure not only delivers extraordinary body stiffness but its flexibility and scalability allowed Cullinan to be fitted with all-wheel drive and four-wheel steering in its silver badged guise. These dynamic features have been comprehensively exploited and re-engineered for Black Badge while retaining the peerless quality of ride that has driven Rolls-Royce’s success.

The Architecture of Luxury has been engineered to meet size and weight requirements of different propulsion systems. When the driver presses the ‘Low’ button situated on the gear selection stalk, they unlock Black Badge Cullinan’s full suite of technologies. This is asserted by the proud amplification of the motor car’s 6.75-litre twin-turbocharged V12 through an entirely new exhaust system, announcing its arrival with a deep, authoritative basso profundo.

Instrument Cluster In The Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan
The V12 in the Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan puts out 600PS. Credit: Rolls-Royce

It was deemed unnecessary to make changes to the engine’s ample internal capacity, however the flexibility of the twin-turbo V12 has been exploited to generate an extra 29PS creating a total output of 600PS. The sense of a single, infinite gear has also been sensationalised with the addition of a further 50NM of torque, bringing the total to a 900NM.

Black Badge Cullinan benefits from a Bespoke transmission and throttle treatment that creates a sense of urgency without ever undermining its Rolls-Royce peerage. The drive-train, ZF 8-speed gear box and both front and rear steered axles work collaboratively to adjust the levels of engagement depending on throttle and steering inputs. The result is an extremely well-mannered tourer at low speeds and a vivid driver’s device when pressed.

Black Badge Cullinan is now available to commission.

Rolls Royce Black Badge Cullinan
Rolls-Royce’s latest tourer, Black Badge Cullinan. Credit: Rolls-Royce

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Luxury Cars

First Bugatti Divo Hypercars Ready For Delivery

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After two years of development at the Molsheim factory, the first Bugatti Divo hypercars are ready for delivery to their new owners.
Bugatti Divo Left Side Profile
First of the Bugatti Divo’s to be delivered to owners. Credit: Bugatti

It’s been two years since the Bugatti Divo was first revealed, and now the first Divo’s have been revealed ahead of delivery to their new owners.

Named after French pilot and Bugatti works racing driver Albert Divo who won six Grand Prix races and two Targa Florio’s, the limited edition Bugatti Divo takes a page out of the early era custom-bodied Bugatti’s and reimagines coachbuilding.

Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim France
Only 40 Bugatti Divo’s will be produced. Credit: Bugatti

“The Divo starts a new era at Bugatti – the era of modern coachbuilding,” shared Stephan Winkelmann, President of Bugatti. “With the Divo we have created a highly customised masterpiece of automotive craftsmanship that is a must-have for any Bugatti collection.”

Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim Factory
An even sportier Bugatti than the Chiron. Credit: Bugatti

The difference in terms of today’s coachbuilding vehicles like the Divo is that in the past, master body-makers tailored different body shapes to a chassis – they hardly ever modified the technology. In contrast, with the new Divo development, designers and engineers have modified the technology and boosted the performance.

Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim Front View
Bugatti have completed a challenging two years of development to finally reveal the first customer builds. Credit: Bugatti

“We had a host of liberties when we developed the Divo because we limited the top speed to 380 km/h” shared Frank Heyl, Bugatti’s Deputy Design Director. “As a result, we were able to generate more downforce and turn the Divo into a visually and technically independent model.”

An even sportier-looking model compared to the Chiron, the Divo has a host of additional air intakes including a NACA air duct on the roof to help cool the 8.0-liter W16 engine, ducts to cool the brakes and intakes on the bonnet to reduce the front surface of the vehicle and improve airflow. Likewise, a new front spoiler design creates greater downforce.

Divo’s rear is also distinguished by a unique 3D taillight design featuring 44 light-up finds that complement the narrow LED front headlights.

Bugatti Divo Silver Grey Rear View
Unique 3D taillight design of the Divo. Credit: Bugatti

Only 40 Bugatti Divo’s will be produced, with each of the already sold-out models priced at approx €5 million.

Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim 2020
Bugatti Divo Revealed Molsheim 2020
Bugatti Divo Silver Grey Front View
Bugatti Divo French Grey Aerial View
Bugatti Divo Rear Left View French Grey
Bugatti Divo Rear Left View Black
Bugatti Divo Light Grey French Side View
Bugatti Divo Light Grey Front Side View
Bugatti Divo Light Grey French Rear View
Bugatti Divo Front View Trio
Bugatti Divo Front Side Profile
Bugatti Divo Front Left Light Grey View

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McLaren F1 Designer Reveals the Gordon Murray T.50 Supercar

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McLaren F1 designer Gordon Murray has officially revealed a new limited edition three-seater T.50 supercar said to have the world’s lightest and highest-revving 3.9-liter V12 engine in the world.
Gordon Murray T50 Hypercar Front Left View
The limited edition Gordon Murray Automotive T.50. Credit: GMA

Legendary car designer Gordon Murray is no stranger to extreme car design, with 20 years’ experience in Formula 1 and cars like the iconic McLaren F1 in his portfolio. Now he’s finally had the opportunity to apply all his industry knowledge to his own supercar, namely the T.50, of which only 100 vehicles will made.

Described by Gordon Murray as his “ultimate car design,” the T.50 is the 50th car design penned by himself over his 50-year career and is said to improve on his acclaimed McLaren F1 “in every conceivable way.”

Gordon Murray with T50 supercar
Gordon Murray with his “ultimate car design”. Credit: GMA

Scheduled to be built at Gordon Murray’s Automotive Production Center in Surrey, UK, the new T.50 has been created as “engineering art,” and like the McLaren F1, features dihedral doors and a three-seat design with the driver’s seat positioned centrally.

Gordon Murray T50 Left Profile View Doors Up
Dihedral doors and clean lines. Credit: GMA
Gordon Murray T50 Supercar Interior
Central positioned drivers seat for the best driving experience. Credit: GMA

“With the design of our T.50 supercar, we are taking the same focused approach that was applied to the design of the McLaren F1”, shared Gordon Murray. “Thanks to modern materials and 30 years of development, we have been able to deliver a far better all-round car in the T50, while setting its weight at just 986kg, a full 150kg lighter than the F1.”

Gordon Murray T50 Left Side Aerial View
The T.50 is almost 1/3 lighter than the average supercar. Credit: GMA

Created with a carbon-fiber monocoque body, the T.50 weighs just 2,174 pounds / 986kgs (which is around 1/3 less than the average supercar) and is powered by a 100% bespoke 3.9-liter V12 engine that is the worlds lightest and highest-revving V12 engine to date.
Producing 663PS @ 11,500rpm and 467Nm of torque @ 9,000rpm, the Cosworth developed engine also features dry-sump oiling to prevent oil starvation in hard cornering, a feature that will be appreciated given the T.50’s power and grip.

Gordon Murray T50 Supercar Work
Gordon Murray explaining the details of the T.50. Credit: GMA

With a central focus on light-weight design, Gordon Murray’s Formula 1 experience shows in the streamlined design of the T.50 supercar with every gram accounted for and all unneeded vents, wings and flaps removed to create what Gordon Murray describes as the most advanced aerodynamics ever seen on a car.

“Next-level aerodynamics allow us to avoid the current supercar trend for exaggerated wings, vents, and ducts. I was determined to create a clean and pure shape that would remain timeless, ensuring the T50 will still look fresh in 30 years.”

The proportions, size, and styling are also something Gordon Murray is 100% happy with, noting that the vehicle can carry three passengers, luggage, and the V12 engine comfortably while keeping under 1000kgs.

A stand-out feature of the T.50 is undoubtedly the giant 15.7-inch central fan at the rear of the vehicle, designed to achieve unmatched aerodynamic performance combined with the underbody aerodynamics and two dynamic rear spoilers.

Gordon Murray T50 Rear Tail
Not so secret aerodynamic weapon – the rear central fan. Credit: GMA
Gordon Murray T50 Left Rear View
Only 100 Gordon Murray T.50’s will be built. Credit: GMA

First used on Murray’s F1 design, the fan-assisted aerodynamic system improves on conventional ground-effect systems by actively managing both underbody and overbody airflow.

This boundary layer control ensures the most effective interaction of airflow on top of, and below the car, balancing drag and downforce at all speeds.

Gordon Murray T50 Rear Aerial View Doors Up

Through the application of two automatic and four driver-selected aero modes, the T.50 is capable of increasing downforce by 50%, reducing drag by 12.5%, and cutting the braking distance by 10m from 150mph.

T50 Drive Modes

Auto Mode: is the car’s default setting. In this mode, the T.50 operates like an ordinary supercar with passive ground-effect downforce.

Braking Mode: automatically deploys the rear spoilers to their maximum (+45 degree) angle when high levels of deceleration are required. The fan also operates simultaneously at high speed while the diffuser valves open. This function can double downforce, enhancing stability and grip, and shortening the 150mph-to-0mph braking distance by a full 10 meters.
If sudden deceleration is required, and when aerodynamics could influence stopping distance, Braking Mode overrides all other modes.

High Downforce Mode: is driver selectable and delivers enhanced traction – in this mode, the rear spoilers deploy at +10 degrees, diffuser valves open, and the fan spools up to increase downforce by 50%.

Streamline mode: cuts drag by 12.5% and boosts straight-line speed while also reducing fuel consumption and downforce. In this mode, the rear spoilers deploy to -10 degrees reducing base suction and drag. The diffuser valves close partially, stalling the diffuser and reducing downforce, which saves wheel travel to make the car more comfortable and efficient. It also sets the fan to operate at high speed, drawing air from the top deck to minimize drag while extending the trailing wake of the car, creating a ‘virtual longtail’ and producing 15kg of thrust.

V-Max Boost: is the most extreme T.50 mode. It uses the characteristics of Streamline Mode, then uses the car’s 48-volt integrated starter-generator to drive the fan – freeing up power to the driveshaft. Combined with the ram-air induction, this boosts power to 700PS for short bursts of acceleration.

Test Mode: operates when the car is stationary and is driver-selected. The fan spools up to its maximum 7,000rpm, the twin rear spoilers cycle through their full range of movement and the diffuser ducts / valves progressively open and close before returning to their rest position.

Gordon Murray T50 Gear Interior

As a limited edition model, each customer will be given first viewing of the vehicle design and will be invited for a seat, steering wheel, and pedals fitting session to set their car up to fit them perfectly. Throughout the build, clients will be kept informed and will have the option of visiting their vehicle. Once completed, owners will be offered tailored experiences and have access to a service network and “flying technician.”

Gordon Murray T50 Hypercar Front Left Doors Up

Only 100 Gordon Murray T.50’s will be built at a starting price of £2.36m (before taxes) with production scheduled for January 2022.

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Limited Edition Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Revealed

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Limited to only 40 vehicles, the Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 is a track-only car with the most powerful naturally aspirated V12 engine produced by Lamborghini.
Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Side View

First announced earlier this year, the new track-only limited edition Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 has been revealed and has been developed in collaboration with Lamborghini Squadra Corse (development) and Lamborghini Centro Stile (styling).

Limited to only 40 units, the Essenza SCV12 has been fitted with the most powerful naturally aspirated V12 engine ever developed by Lamborghini and borrows technological solutions from the racing track for the ultimate driver’s experience.

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Side Front View

“Essenza SCV12 represents the purest track driving experience that our brand can offer, an engineering feat that highlights the inextricable link between our cars and the asphalt of the track,” says Automobili Lamborghini CEO Stefano Domenicali. “Lamborghini is a brand constantly looking to the future and searching for new challenges, but we never forget our roots and who we are: Essenza SCV12 is the perfect combination of our unconventional spirit as a super sports car manufacturer and our true passion for motorsport.”

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Front View

Created exclusively for the track, the Essenza SCV12 delivers over 830hp, has higher downforce levels than a GT3 car, and an extreme power-to-weight ratio of 1.66kg/hp thanks to a newly developed carbon fiber monocoque chassis that does not require an internal roll cage. It is also the first GT car developed that adheres to all FIA prototype safety rules.

Maurizio Reggiani, Chief Technical Officer of Automobili Lamborghini, remarked: “Essenza SCV12 is the ultimate expression of the V12 naturally aspirated engine, the symbol of our brand since 1963. It is a project in which we combined the pursuit of engineering perfection with refined aerodynamics, futuristic design, and innovative solutions such as the carbon monocoque without internal roll-cage. The result is an engaging and uncompromising car, born to race and to showcase on the track the characteristics that have made Lamborghini famous worldwide, guaranteeing unique and special emotions for both the driver and onlookers.”

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Side Rear View

Aerodynamically, the Lamborghini Essenza SCV12’s front hood features a double air intake like the Huracán track cars that works to separate the hot airflow from the radiator and the cold air going to the roof scoop. At the rear, a large adjustable double-profile rear wing works to increase efficiency and downforce.

The design has also been a collaborative effort with the Lamborghini Centro Stile team with Mitja Borkert, Head of Lamborghini Centro Stile noting, “I was excited about this project from the very start, because it would allow us to create a car that was different but at the same time unmistakably Lamborghini, extreme but stylistically very clean, as a real racing car should be. With the Essenza SCV12 we pay tribute to both our racing past and the present: the large rear wing, side fins and front splitter are elements taken from the Huracán Super Trofeo EVO and GT3 EVO. This car is the perfect combination of our tradition and what we imagine for the future.”

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Y Interior Console

Continuing Lamborghini’s hexagonal geometry throughout the design, the Essenza SCV12 also has the “Y” stylistic feature repeated throughout the livery in the cockpit and an asymmetrical carbon “Y” racing instrument panel and dashboard. The multifunction steering wheel has also been inspired by F1 single-seater steering wheels allowing the driver to keep their hands on the wheel at all times.

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Y Interior Cockpit

Only 40 track-only Lamborghini Essenza SCV12’s will be produced. Owners will be part of a unique program that includes an athletic training program and technical support similar to the official Squadra Corse drivers. As part of the program, owners will be given access to some of the most iconic racetracks around the world. Each car will also have a personalized garage plus dedicated services, including webcams, to allow customers to monitor their vehicles 24 hours a day using an app.

Lamborghini Essenza SCV12 Side Left View

The official track calendar will start in 2021 with “arrive and drive” events held at numerous FIA Grade 1 homologated circuits and assistance will be provided by the Squadra Corse technical staff with the support of Emanuele Pirro, five-time winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans and an excellent tutor for the customer-drivers; and Marco Mapelli, Lamborghini Squadra Corse Factory Driver.

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