GOODWOOD, ENGLAND - This is news of the kind that is becoming common among the premium car companies. Rolls-Royce recorded a 25% jump in sales in 2019, underpinned by solid demand for its first-ever SUV, the Cullinan.

The 116-year-old British company announced on Tuesday that it had sold 5152 cars in 2019, an all time record, and up from the 4107 units sold in the previous year.

"Worldwide demand last year for our Cullinan SUV has driven this success and is expected to stabilise in 2020," Chief Executive Officer Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes said in a statement.

The Cullinan was unveiled in 2018. Although it's not the type of vehicle that you would expect to take into the bush, the Cullinan was designed from the outset to be a serious off-roader. Furthermore, its 6.75-litre twin-turbo V12 engine has been re-tuned to deliver 420kW at 5000 revs and peak torque (850Nm) at just 1600rpm, and it drives all four wheels (a first for Rolls-Royce) via uprated propshafts and all-wheel steering.

A breather for BMW

The BMW-owned brand's strong numbers serve as a breather at a time when the global motor industry is still grappling with various challenges amid a broader economic slowdown that dented sales of carmakers such as Volkswagen and Ford.

North America continued to be the biggest market for the prestigious British brand, accounting for about a third of Rolls-Royce's total sales, followed by China and Europe. 

Rolls Royce also recorded strong growth of 29% across the Middle East and Africa region last year. According to the company, the Middle East continues to be one of the strongest global markets for highly bespoke Rolls-Royce vehicles.

In 2019, Rolls-Royce cars were sold in more than 50 countries around the world, through a global network of 135 dealerships. 

Reuters & IOL