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BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE CAR

CARS > USED CAR HISTORY > BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE

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BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE (1991-) CAR HISTORY

Car review on BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE

In the 1950s, the name Continental represented the very pinnacle of superior transportation: with such a badge on your Bentley, you were assured of absolute opulence combined with effortless touring power, and everyone else could be assured that you were driving quite the most expensive car money could buy.


That was Bentley's golden age, at least in post-war terms. After the great Continentals were retired by the parent company, Rolls-Royce, Bentleys became merely badge-engineered versions of Rolls-Royce products. By the 1970s, Bentley represented a mere 5 per cent of all Rolls-Royce group sales. A great name was being squandered.


Luckily, the management at Crewe realized this fact and began a steady renaissance of Bentley. First came the Mulsanne Turbo, basically a much more powerful version of the Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit, which also benefited from being less ostentatious.


The sporting heritage of the Bentley badge deserved more, however, and in 1991 it got it. The Continental name was revived for a model that had no Rolls-Royce equivalent: here was a true-blood Bentley that lived up to the provenance of its name.


The new car was actually christened the Continental R, the R nominally referring to Road holding. This was a handsome and imposing two-door coupe, some 17ft 6in (5.34 meters) long, 6ft 2in (1.88 meters) wide and 2.5 tones (2.46 tons) heavy. The extravagance of such an ample car was flaunted at its Geneva Motor Show launch, as the show car was painted the brightest shade of red obtainable.


To pull all that bulk, Rolls-Royce engineers stayed with its familiar 6.75-litre V-eight and truck-derived Ganett turbo charging, in this form good for about 385 bhp and a huge 553Ib ft (750Nm) of torque. Transmitting this tidal wave of power through a GM four-speed automatic gearbox, the R was indecently fast: 0-60 mph (0-96 kph) in 6.1 seconds and a top speed of 155 mph (249 kph), or enough to dispatch a well-driven Porsche.


Rolls-Royce called the new Continental "the finest sporting coupe in the world", and with some justification: despite its proportions, it handled respectably, rode very comfortably, cosseted the driver and passengers in the utmost luxury and sustained the most unerring ambience of serenity and superiority,


At £160,000 ($269,000) this was also, in 1991, the most expensive British car ever made, yet it sold better than any other model in the Bentley range. Bentley even saw fit to induce yet more from its superlative creation. First came the Continental S, with over 400 bhp at its command. Then followed the Azure, the convertible version of the Continental, which was for some time the only car in which to be seen on the Cote d'Azur, justifying setting its owner back a cool £215,000 ($362,000).


The mighty Continental T is the most radical member of the Bentley family. Its wheelbase was shortened, its wheel- arches were flared, and its wheels were massive five-spoke alloys. The interior was laced with milled aluminum. Delightfully, you had to press a big red button to start the engine, which now had no less than 5901b ft (800Nm) of torque to dig into, making it surely the world's most upper-class hot rod.

BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE

 

SPECIFICATIONS

 

ENGINE TYPE

V-eight-cylinder

CAPACITY

6750 cc

POWER

385-400 bhp

TRANSMISSION

4-speed auto

TOP SPEED

155 mph (249 km/h)

NUMBER BUILT

Still in production

 

 

 

 

 

 
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BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE CAR

CARS > USED CAR HISTORY > BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE


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Shopping Mall :BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE Cars at Auto Lemon - Used Car History Check

Cars Directory: BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE Auto, Automobile, Automotive, Car, Cars, Classic, Classic Car, Used Cars, New Cars, Used Car, New Car

Site Description: BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE Used Car History reviews and guide on classic and older model cars. Including car designers from Italy and Germany. Learn history of cars from classic, exotic, used, new to prototype model cars.

Cars Topics: BENTLEY CONTINENTAL / AZURE Classic Cars, Price, Prices, For Sale, Part, Restoration,
Classifieds, Classified ads, pictures, muscle car, picture, and photo , AutoCheck, KELLEY BLUE BOOK, USED CAR HISTORY, VIN number, VIN SEARCH, Lemon Car Check