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Bentley brings back Old English White for a glorious special edition

Ivory is making a comeback as a car colour of choice this year. And now, Bentley joins the hype with this one-off Old English White Continental GT Azure that celebrates greatness made in 1953.

Choosing the spec of a Bentley would be up there with one of the more difficult processes in the car-buying world. Nothing to do with the brand themselves, more so that the vast quantity of paint schemes, leather finishes, minute details and wheel choices on offer could leave you dazed and confused if you don’t have the exact colour combination mind. Thankfully, there is a solution: Let Bentley do it for you. 

Recreated using Mulliner’s Personal Commissioning Guide, this wonderful Continental GT Azure bares close resemblance to the 1953 R-Type Continental, JAS 949, and had been carefully considered to ensure it not only looks the same but evokes the same feeling when driving the classic. The 1953 car quoted as ‘a modern magic carpet which annihilates great distances’ was the fastest four-seat luxury saloon in the world when launched in 1952. Design wise, it was cutting edge at the time for having three key design elements - the power line from the front wheel, the rear haunch, and the roofline. All elements that were the inspiration for the first-generation Continental GT in 2003 and every Continental GT since. The latest Azure members of the Continental GT family continue to celebrate elegance and timeless design, directly descended from the R-Type Continental.

To recreate the closest specification for the modern interpretation of JAS 949, a singular Continental GT V8 Azure has been hand painted in Old English White, a colour that suits the lines of both modern and heritage Bentley perfectly. As per the muse, the Continental GT is fitted with a smattering of chrome, and while JAS 949 rides on 16” wheels, the newer one-off sits pretty on 22-inch hand-finished black and polished wheels, making it really turn some heads.

Perhaps our favourite part of all though is the interior. Bentley have consistently knocked it out of the part when delivering an opulent yet comforting cabin space, and the Cricket Ball leather can be seen throughout, providing an indulging, rich heritage feel for both driver and passengers. These plush seats, combined with a contemporary aspect, the Burr Walnut veneer that has been left as open pore, provides a closer texture to the patinated finish in JAS 949.

It is so common now to see brands release special edition machines with no real context or reason, but what Bentley have recreated here is a stylish and sophisticated modern-day interpretation of a car that truly stunned the world 70 years ago, a car that really did have it all, just like a Bentley should!