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Bentley Flying Spur in Geneva: luxury liner receives a facelift in 2013

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1 For 2 years Walter Owen Bentley worked hard on to increase the fame of his automobiles. After that, he owned five trophies from the prestigious 24-hour race in Le Mans, with the Bentley Boys had one of the most party-strong men's groups in London in the 20s and 30s - and was broke. It was in 1931 when Rolls-Royce took over the Bentley factory.

The British luxury brand has been part of the VW Group since 1998, which not only provided Bentley with its in-house W12 engine, but also with all-wheel drive and the mandate to grow. The Flying Spur sedan, which has been in production since 2005, is now in its second generation heralding the technology path that Bentley should take into the future.

Bentley Flying Spur is growing in breadth

With its length of 5.29 meters, the height of 1.49 and the width of 2.20 meters measured over the rear-view mirror, the new Bentley Flying Spur fills the space of the previous model almost exactly. The track has grown by 20 millimeters in width on the front axle and by 35 millimeters on the rear axle, but the wheelbase has remained the same at 3.065 meters.

The four or five-seater body of the new Bentley Flying Spur shows an accentuated, sharp side line with a muscular hip curve in the rear area, what Bentley calls the 'tight feature line'. Designer Luc Donckerwolke emphasizes the exciting 'interplay between concave and convex surfaces, which gives the sedan a particularly muscular elegance and combines a self-confident appearance with a sporty, dynamic profile'.

A secret of bodywork production lies in the superforming process, with which, for example, the front aluminum fenders are blown into shape with compressed air at a temperature of around 500 degrees. Although this is an expensive method, the Bentley Flying Spur saves weight and allows for more precise shaping of edges and bulges.

Bentley-B also on the fenders

The traditional Bentley-B is not only found on the radiator but also at the air outlets on the front fenders. Compared to its predecessor, the chrome-plated radiator grille on the Bentley Flying Spur is a few degrees more upright in the front, which is framed by double headlights and the wide air inlet under the radiator with its massive chrome band.

The light and sturdy doors make the samelike the trunk lid made of composite materials, which also houses the main antenna for all electronic vehicle systems, is a completely new design.

Bentley has put a lot of effort into the torsional stiffness, the noise insulation and the drag coefficient. In order to twist the body by one degree, a force of 36,500 Newtons has to act on the new Bentley Flying Spur. The driving noise is already minimized on the outside of the underbody by aerodynamically effective cladding parts, which is not only conducive to inner peace, but also to the drag coefficient - which is 0.29 at a low level. New door and window seals, which now have two instead of one sealing edge, also help to reduce noise. Goodbye wind whistling.

Special leather for the Bentley Flying Spur

The seats of the Bentley Flying Spur are clad in a new leather skin specially developed for Bentley. According to the factory, it is softer but more resistant than the material previously used and available in twelve colors. Lumbar support with memory function, seat heating and ventilation as well as a foam potpourrie of various degrees of hardness as a filling should guarantee the highest quality of wellbeing with optimal lateral support in all seats, including 14-fold adjustability.

Those who do without the third seat in the rear of the Bentley Flying Spur can, for example, order a wide center console as an armrest, storage compartment and minibar carrier. The 9-liter cooling compartment then protrudes backwards like a postal parcel into the 475-liter trunk. However, there is no through-loading option even with a third rear seat. The interior designers at Bentley know that anyone who orders a Bentley Flying Spur does not need to be able to take skis with them.

Internet access in the Bentley Flying Spur

The beautiful living effects of the interior in the Bentley Flying Spur include a total of seven wood veneer variants, two of which are standard equipment: Burr Walnut and Dark Fiddleback Eucalyptus. According to Bentley, each fyling lane carries no less than 10 square meters of carefully mirrored and varnished natural decoration.

If you have had enough of it, you can call up the full range of modern connectivity on an eight-inch touchscreen at the front (there are two 10-inch rear panels). This is meant literally: all infotainment functions can be controlled by voice command. Satellite navigation and a Bluetooth interface are as natural as the usability of all current music sources such as CD, DVD, SD card, iPod or radio.

Thanks to the optionally installed WiFi hotspot, the Flying Spur passenger whizzes around the Internet wirelessly and without a router, managed by the Bentley Connectivity Unit (BCU) multimedia system. The necessary helpers are called SIM cards and64-gigabyte hard drive.

New acoustic glass absorbs outside noise

The insulation of outside noise includes besides those already mentioned Underbody paneling and the new seals a few other technical tricks. This includes, for example, the use of a special acoustic glass with a noise-reducing intermediate layer, the elaborate insulation of the large doors and a huge, newly developed rear silencer. That alone eats at 3,000 rpm no less than 12 decibels compared to its predecessor.

To keep the men and women in the back seats of the Bentley Flying Spur cool in any summer outside temperature, Bentley is equipping the new sedan with a climate booster for the rear and a new, thermostatic expansion valve makes it easier for the displaced, heated air to escape.

Bentley Flying Spur has 19-inch wheels

The tires also expand : Newly developed tires are used on the standard 19-inch rims, which have a sidewall 12 percent higher than the previously used rubbers. This is good for the ride comfort.
In general, Bentley is treading a new way of setting the chassis for the Bentley Flying Spur, which no longer follows the dictate that a sporty car must also be correspondingly hard and therefore uncomfortably suspended and damped.

The gas pressure suspension rates on the front and rear axles have been reduced by ten and 13 percent, respectively, and the anti-roll bars are designed to be 13 and 15 percent softer. The chassis bushings lost a quarter of their original hardness, which further restricted the transmission of noise and vibrations. In order to prevent the body from producing high roll angles when cornering quickly, Bentley has brought the CDC hydraulic damper system to a new, adaptive level of rigidity. The driver can choose the damping rate of his Bentley Flying Spur himself in four stages.

Flying Spur lowers itself

At high speeds, the Flying Spur automatically lowers itself. At 195 km /h, the front drops 5 millimeters and the rear 10 millimeters. From a tempo of 240, you go one floor lower: another eight millimeters at the front and 13 millimeters at the back. At the same time, a newly tuned ESP works in the chassis, which no longer intervenes in dynamic mode. Thus, according to Bentley, the driver now has 'the freedom to test the limits of handling'.

The Bentley Flying Spur does not lack sufficient power. From a displacement of 6 liters, the twelve-cylinder, supercharged by two quickly responding turbos, pumps up to 625 hp to the ZF eight-speed automatic. From there, 60 percent of the torque between 2,000 and 6,000 rpm, which is present between 2,000 rpm and 6,000 rpm, is normally passed on to the rear axle and 40 percent to the front axle, with changingTraction ratios, the torque distribution to the rear axle varies between 35 and 85%.

The performance figures published in advance by Bentley read - depending on the type of driver - either electrifying or alarming. In 4.6 seconds the two and a half ton truck throws itself from a standing start over the 100 km /h limit, after 9.5 seconds the Bentley Flying Spur is already dashing towards the horizon at 160 km /h, and only at 322 km /h is over. Dry swallowing and the ecological consolation that you can take it easy. This then serves the goal of lowering the average consumption of 14.7 liters of super per 100 kilometers by one or the other deciliter.

At least The Bentley costs 200,000 euros

Nothing is known about the price of the Bentley Flying Spur, but it will be around 200,000 euros, depending on national tax customs. Mind you, this is only in the basic version. The customization list provides information about the options for sprucing up the colliery. The color Dark Cashmere has recently gone into series production as the 17th tone, but there are 100 other surcharges that can be used to refine a Flying Spur.

The latest craze is the Damson shade, which is supposed to reflect the brilliance of an extremely rare purple diamond. Five additional leather tones, five other types of fine wood, wheels in 20- or 21-inch versions: Once you have chosen a Bentley, you are spoiled for choice with the right accessories. That's the beauty of tradition: unlike in modern usage, the word 'without alternative' does not appear in the Bentley brochure.

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