Cars & Bikes
Bend it like
The new Mulsanne is a car that evokes the Bentley philosophy of building the
best luxury grand tourers in the world
Unveiled at the Frankfurt Car Show in September, the new Bentley Mulsanne is inspired by the company founder WO Bentley’s crowning achievement in 1930, the 8-Litre. This early motoring masterpiece represented the last big Bentley that was designed, engineered and built from the ground up by Bentley engineers - until now.
||While the new Bentley Mulsanne pays respect to the past, it is a thoroughly modern luxury car that offers the world’s most exclusive driving experience – a unique fusion of power, refinement and elegance.
The return of the Mulsanne name to a car carrying Bentley’s iconic ‘Winged B’ emblem underlines the company’s racing pedigree and nowhere reflects that heritage better than the famed Le Mans circuit, the scene of no fewer than six Bentley triumphs. Few places offer a stronger or more emotive connection with the Bentley marque than the famed Mulsanne corner.
Designing a grand car that looks powerful, yet agile is no easy task. Yet this is precisely what has been achieved with the Bentley Mulsanne. Like a powerful athlete that is also a swift and graceful runner, it captures a unique fusion of power, elegance and sporting style.
The entire body is sculpted to create rich design contrasts. It appears to be solid, as if sculpted from a single block, yet simultaneously graceful and elegant. Solid yet sleek. Classic yet modern. The design is made to accommodate customised materials, not to reduce their usage. For example, the hand brazing of different thickness of steel is required to create that exclusive, seamless, flush-fit feeling. Indeed, it takes a full 45 minutes to braze one lengthy section of metal behind the rear doors!
Bentley customers have a world of infinite choice when commissioning their cars. There are 114 paint colours in the range that include everything from unusual heritage colours, special satin and pearlescent finishes and duo-tone combinations. But the choice does not end there. Through the bespoke world of Bentley Mulliner, unique colours can exactly match a customer’s vision and
Inside the Mulsanne, the senses are teased by the use of contrasting materials. Mirror finished brightware is artfully mixed with tactile knurling. Classic tones are set off by daring luxury accent
colours. The Bentley interior design team has continued to develop and evolve the luxurious interiors for which their cars are renowned, based on a large-scale, research programme to identify the classic signature features that have defined Bentleys from the 1920s to the present day.
Indeed, the interior is distinguished by a remarkable acreage of polished wood, meant to give the car 'the feel of a living room' (presumably a wood-panelled one). Wriggle your feet into the deeper pile carpets specially created to offer an unparalleled level of comfort. To bring out a richer leather smell, a traditional tanning process is used and ancient cabinet-making techniques like ‘mirror matching’ for applying veneer are employed for the woodwork.
But don’t be deceived by this classic look. Beneath the surface is the best technology available, from advanced electronic systems to four-zone air conditioning and state-of-the-art soundproofing.
Music enthusiasts will love the latest premium audio system, designed exclusively for the Bentley Mulsanne by Naim, a British company recognised by audiophiles as a world-class purveyor of specialist sound systems.
The specs on the new Bentley Mulsanne are staggering and what's more, it generates all its power from a petrol engine. Not just any engine it's a massive 6.75-litre twin-turbo V8 producing 505 horsepower and a whopping 752 lb-ft of torque.
The new Mulsanne has a new Driver Dynamics Control system with a mode simply called 'Bentley'. In addition to 'Bentley', there's also 'Sport' and 'Comfort', and a fourth option, 'Custom', which allows you to tune the steering and suspension through the new multimedia system.
Besides setting the Driver Dynamics Control from the advanced key fob when approaching the vehicle, you can also use it to set radio stations, phone books, seat position (including hot/cold ventilation and massage), steering wheel, seat belt position and even the rear window blinds.
If the key ring has that much power imagine what it's like to drive the Mulsanne, or even better, ride in the back seat.