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Bentley Flying Spur

The independent definitive Bentley Flying Spur video review
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    SPURRED ONWARDS (some text hidden)

    By Jonathan Crouch

    Bentley's third generation Flying Spur saloon diverges a little more from its Continental origins. Is any saloon in the world really better than this one? Jonathan Crouch wonders.

    Ten Second Reviewword count: 55

    The third generation version of Bentley's Continental Flying Spur blends old-school craftsmanship with the latest technology in the super-luxury saloon sector. Beneath the chrome trim, the leather and the wood veneers, there's cutting-edge tech at work producing breathtaking results and creating in this boardroom-segment limousine the world's fastest four-door. It's hard not to be impressed.

    Backgroundword count: 159

    The Flying Spur names dates back to 1959 and saloon version of Bentley's R-Type Continental Coupe. With a name borrowed from the family crest of Arthur Talbot Johnstone, Managing Director of the coachbuilder Mulliner. In the modern Volkswagen Group-owned era, the 'Continental Flying Spur' badge was revived in 2005 for a saloon version of the Continental GT Coupe, with a second generation design (just known as the 'Flying Spur') appearing a decade later in 2015, a scant four years before the arrival of this more fundamentally new MK3 model. The obvious rivals to this car lie with models like the Mercedes-Maybach S650 and the Rolls Royce Ghost, but in concept, what's on offer here is probably better understood as something a bit more dynamic than that: imagine a cross between a BMW M5 and a Rolls Royce Phantom and you'll be somewhere close. This is the world's faster four-door: but that's not the only reason it's very desirable indeed....

    Driving Experienceword count: 296

    Bentley's worked hard to make this Flying Spur more of its own car in this third generation form - it's the brand's first vehicle to feature four-wheel steering for instance. This model still though, owes most of its engineering to its Continental GT coupe showroom stablemate, which in turn borrows is MSB platform, 8-speed twin clutch auto transmission and rear suspension from a Porsche Panamera. Like the Conti GT, the Flying Spur was launched with a W12 twelve cylinder unit. That W12 now only comes with a top 'Speed' variant offering 635PS, which spirits you to 60mph in just 3.8s en route to 207mph, which makes it the world's fastest saloon. This car is also engineered for a 4.0-litre petrol V8 (sourced from Audi with 550PS). Or you could choose a 2.9-litre V6 petrol Plug-in petrol hybrid unit, which has 544PS, plus an all-electric driving range of around 26 miles. This PHEV uses an 18kWh battery and sprints to 60mph in 4.1s. A key change over the previous generation Flying Spur lies with the integration of a more reactive all-wheel drive system. The old set-up featured a fixed 40:60 split between front and rear wheels and left the car understeering rather easily when you tried to push it along. In contrast, the replacement 'Active All-Wheel-Drive' package can constantly vary front-to-rear torque split depending on the driving situation and deliberately leaves the car using rear wheel drive as much as possible. As before, there's air suspension, now a three-chamber system that works in conjunction with the clever 48V electro-mechanical anti-roll bars first seen on the Bentayga. Suspension feel is one of the things you can influence via three provided driving modes - 'Sport', 'Comfort' and 'Bentley'. Steering feel and throttle response also get tweaked with the settings.

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    Pictures (high res disabled)

    Statistics (subset of data only)

    Min

    Max

    Price:

    £168,300.00

    Insurance group 1-50:

    50

    CO2 (g/km):

    337

    Max Speed (mph):

    207

    0-62 mph (s):

    3.7

    Combined Mpg:

    19.2

    Length (mm):

    5316

    Width (mm):

    2220

    Height (mm):

    1484

    Boot Capacity (l):

    420

    Scoring (subset of scores)

    Category: Luxury Saloons and Estates

    Performance
    90%
    Handling
    80%
    Comfort
    80%
    Space
    80%
    Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

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