Last Updated on June 9, 2023 by Victor A

The luxury SUV segment has created one of the most exciting rivalries in the industry, the one of the Bentley Bentayga vs the Rolls-Royce Cullinan. Two British automakers that employ a similar approach to how luxurious SUVs should be made.

Bentley and Roll-Royce are both luxury automakers that have been competing for decades. When the SUV market started growing it was a matter of time until both marques decided to enter and show us their big guns. Bentley was first by releasing the Bentayga in 2015; while Roll-Royce waited three years more and presented us the Cullinan.

Although both cars were closely matched the Cullinan made the Bentayga feel a bit obsolete, so last year Bentley debuted the facelifted Bentayga, with more cohesive looks and an updated line-up.


Even though both SUVs have a similar target, the approach in design is quite different, Rolls-Royce goes for a classic style, while Bentley thinks that sporty looks are a better approach. 

Bentley Bentayga vs Rolls-Royce Cullinan front
Bentley Bentayga (left) vs Rolls-Royce Cullinan (right)

The first thing you might notice is that both cars have a huge grille, which is something found in all the cars in their line-ups since it’s part of the brands’ design philosophies and big grilles are usually considered as a premium-luxury design clue in the automobile industry.

In terms of the overall shape, the Cullinan is more square, while the Bentayga looks sleeker with more pronounced lines; both shapes work very well since they add character to each SUV.

Something that it’s important to note is that the recent Bentayga’s facelift changed its shape a bit since it used to have less defined lines, looking more round; but now it’s more square, and thanks to that it looks more actual. Design is subjective but in our opinion, the facelifted Bentayga looks better, and more modern than its predecessor.

For the interior, both SUVs are characterized by having high-quality materials and well-made designs. However, even though the quality is top-notch, the designs are nothing out of this world as both cars didn’t try to reinvent the wheel and they share many elements with other cars on their line-up.

Bentley Bentayga vs Rolls-Royce Cullinan interior
Bentley Bentayga (left) Rolls-Royce Cullinan (right)

Versions and Engines

Here is where we find the biggest contrast; the approach in terms of versions is quite different for both brands. Rolls-Royce only offers two versions, the standard Cullinan and the Cullinan Black Badge, while Bentley is offering four versions of the Bentayga: the Hybrid, the V8, the S (which is the most recent model), and the Speed, which is not offered in Europe anymore since the last-gen didn’t achieve decent sales.

Rolls-Royce Cullinan

Starting with Rolls-Royce offering, the standard Cullinan is powered by a twin-turbo 6.75-litre V12 that pumps out 571 hp and 627 lb-ft (850 Nm) of torque. Its top speed is rated at 155 mph (250 km/h), and it can accelerate from 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) in 5.0 seconds, while its 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) acceleration is achieved in 5.2 seconds.

Then, there’s the Rolls-Royce Cullinan Black Badge, which uses the same V12 engine, although this one gets a power pump that enables the Black Badge to produce a whopping 600 hp and 664 lb-ft (900 Nm) of torque. 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) is achieved in 5.1 seconds, and the top speed remains the same at 155 mph (250 km/h).

HP0-62 mph (0-100 km/h)Max Speed
Cullinan571 hp5.2 s155 mph (250 km/h)
Cullinan Black Badge600 hp5.1 s155 mph (250 km/h)
Rolls-Royce Cullinan Black Badge
Rolls-Royce Cullinan Black Badge

Bentley Bentayga

For the Bentayga range, it starts with the entry-level Bentayga Hybrid, which combines a 3.0-litre V6 and a 95 kW electric motor producing 443 hp (335 hp from the V6 and 126 hp from the electric motor), and 516 lb-ft (700 Nm) of torque. Acceleration from 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) is set to 5.2 seconds, and from 0-62 (0-100 km/h) is set to 5.5 seconds.

The Bentayga V8 and the Bentayga S, are essentially the same car as they share the same engine and specs, but there are some minor differences, the Bentayga S gets some extra design clues, like a bigger spoiler, black accents, an alcantara interior, and it also receives better driving dynamics.

Both models are extremely capable SUVs, as they pack a twin-turbo 4.0-litre V8 with 550 hp and 568 lb-ft (770 Nm) of torque, allowing them to go from 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) in 4,4 seconds; and from 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) in 4,5 seconds, with a top speed of 180 mph (290 km/h).

And as a range-topper, there’s the Bentley Bentayga Speed, which features a twin-turbo 6.0-litre W12 engine, with 626 hp, and 664 lb-ft (900 Nm) of torque. It can speed up from 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) in 3.8 seconds, and from 0-62 (0-100 km/h) in 3.9 seconds. And it’s limited to a top speed of 190 mph (306 km/h), making it the SUV with the highest top speed in the world.

HP0-62 mph (0-100 km/h)Max Speed
Bentayga Hybrid443 hp5.5 s158 mph (254 km/h)
Bentayga V8 & S550 hp4.5 s180 mph (290 km/h)
Bentayga Speed626 hp3.9 s190 mph (306 km/h)
Bentley Bentayga Speed
Bentley Bentayga Speed

Cullinan vs Bentayga Pricing

First of all, you need to know that these are among the most expensive SUVs in the world, since they dominate the luxury segment, you can expect them to cost quite a bit

In the US The standard Cullinan starts at an MSRP price of $268,000 (280.000 € in Europe), and the Rolls-Royce Cullinan Black Badge starts at an asking price of $325,000 (345.000 € in Europe) and if you were to configure it to your liking it could set you back at around $425,000.

ModelStarting MSRP Price (USA)Starting Price (Europe)
Cullinan Black Badge$325,000345.000€

For the Bentayga range, in the US the Hybrid starts at an MSRP price of $166,425 (starts at around 217.000 € in Europe), while the V8 starts at $183,425 (in Europe it starts at the same price as the Hybrid, 217.000 €), then the S gets a starting price of $222,525 (starts at  258.381 € in Europe), and for the Bentayga Speed, the price starts at $251,425; note that as stated above, since it’s not offered in Europe there’s no price.

Prices for the 2022 range are a bit different, as more versions have been included and prices has been increased.

ModelStarting MSRP Price (USA)Starting Price (Europe)
Bentayga Hybrid$166,425217.000 €
Bentayga V8$183,425217.000 €
Bentayga S$222,525258.381 €
Bentayga Speed$251,425Not Available in Europe

Which one is better? Bentley Bentayga vs Rolls-Royce Cullinan

When comparing the numbers, specs, prices, and all the offerings, it’s clear that the Bentayga wins. However, the Cullinan is clearly more exclusive, it doesn’t need crazy acceleration, nor incredible driving dynamics to stand out. What the Cullinan offers is comfort, opulence, and uniqueness. 

The Bentayga is a special car, but arguably Bentley has diluted the car image by offering cheaper versions, and in our opinion, that’s why the Bentayga Speed never had good sales. It’s hard to differentiate the less costly Bentayga, the Hybrid with the most expensive one, the Speed, as they are quite similar in the interior and the exterior design.

We think the Rolls-Royce Cullinan wins this comparison, since it’s not only exclusive because of its price tag, it’s also the only SUV in te world that features a V12 engine. The Cullinan created its own league. While the Bentayga competes with SUVs like the Lamborghini Urus, the Audi RSQ8, the BMW X6M, etc. while the Rolls-Royce seems like it is competing against itself.

But it’s a matter of time before Ferrari shakes the whole market with the introduction of the Ferrari Purosangue, which will likely target the Urus, the Bentayga, and the Cullinan.

Sources: Bentley, Rolls-Royce




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