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The first mule for the upcoming Rolls-Royce SUV has been revealed, and it looks like what a boy racer from the 1990s might do if put in charge of the British brand’s design department.

Based on the Phantom sedan, the engineering prototype features black alloy wheels and a shortened wheelbase, hence the crazily short rear doors. Oh, and there’s also that unmissable rear wing.

According to Rolls-Royce, “the body may hint at the size of the new car, but it features no design aspects of the eventual high-sided, all-terrain motor car”.

The mule will hit the streets this week and represents the first phase of development work on Project Cullinan. Announced in the middle of February, Project Cullinan will result in Rolls-Royce producing its first ever crossover, which will be based on an all-new aluminium architecture.


The company continues to go to great lengths to avoid the term SUV, stating it neither does sport nor utility.

With this mule, the company’s engineers will begin sorting out a suspension package that will deliver a accompany the new vehicle’s all-wheel drive system. The development team has been tasked with giving the new Rolls a “‘magic-carpet’ ride not only on the road, but off-road too”.

Overall, the project’s mules are expected to spend an equal amount of time on-road as off it.