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Karlmann King: meet the £1.6 million SUV that thinks it's a stealth fighter

Published: 23 March 2018

► The ‘stealth fighter’ of SUVs
► Designed in China, built in Europe
► Costs ‘just’ £1.6 million…

If super-premium SUVs are a useful tool to show just how much money you have, then this Karlmann King is the equivalent of Thor’s hammer.

Designed to look like a stealth fighter – but make as many people notice you as possible – it’s been designed by a team of 1800 working for the Chinese company IAT, and assembled over here in Europe.

You can see the King in action in the official video here:

Each Karlman King starts off life as an F550, but eventually ends up as the Batmobile you see before you. The extensive transformation includes tuning the Ford’s 6.8-litre V10 to 396bhp, and mating it to a six-speed auto ‘box with all-wheel drive and air suspension – which you’ll probably need, if you’re in the habit of crossing deserts in your lunchbreak.

That V10 lump suggests decent performance, but when you factor in the car’s 4.5-tonne kerbweight and six-metre length, maybe it’ll just about get past motorway speeds.

The Karlmann King has a top speed of a paltry 87mph, according to its makers…

Of course, that 4.5-tonne weight is partly down to the wide range of utilities you’ll find in the Karlmann King’s interior.

Pictures on the company’s website appear to show an interior that looks less like a Rolls-Royce Phantom’s, but more like a Las Vegas casino. But that’s properly bang on the money for some prospective Karlmann King owners, we suspect…

By Curtis Moldrich

CAR's online editor and racing-sim enthusiast