New Bentley Mulsanne – Latest Pictures and Video
Following on from our ‘Stop Press’ news announcement on Sunday, more pictures have been released of the unveiling of the new Bentley Mulsanne at the Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance in Monterey, California, where Bentley was the featured marque.
Later that Sunday night, Dr. Franz-Josef Paefgen, Chairman and Chief Executive of Bentley Motors, and Richard Charlesworth, the company’s Director of Royal and VIP Relations, again presented the all-new flagship four-door grand saloon – this time at the Gooding & Company auction. Here, the first Mulsanne chassis went under the hammer, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Pebble Beach Phil Hill Scholarships. The final price – including buyer’s premium – was $550,000.
The new Mulsanne has been conceived, styled and engineered entirely at Bentley’s headquarters in Crewe, and will go into production next year in a high-tech new manufacturing facility within the Crewe factory. While Bentley has so far released few technical details, more will be revealed at September’s IAA Frankfurt Motor Show, where the Mulsanne will be on public display.
In the meantime, Bentley is emphasising the new car’s links to the heritage of the marque, and in particular the ‘crowning achievement’ of company founder W.O. Bentley, the 1930 8-litre. This, they point out, was ‘the last big Bentley designed, engineered and built from the ground up by Bentley engineers – until now’. And to drive the point home, the Mulsanne shared the podium in Pebble Beach with W.O.’s own ‘sensitively conserved company car’.
“The Mulsanne has been designed with exactly the same guiding principles, so it is entirely fitting that these Bentleys from different eras share the same stage,” explained Dr. Ulrich Eichhorn, Member of the Board, Engineering, who claimed the 8-litre was a ‘car built without compromise’. Capable of reaching more than 100mph, the 8-litre demonstrated W.O. Bentley’s ambition and ability to build a grand luxury car capable of surpassing every other leading manufacturer of the day. A total of 100 cars were built in 1930 and 1931.
Of the all-new Bentley Mulsanne, Dr. Franz-Josef Paefgen, said, “ The challenge we set our engineers was to create a new grand Bentley that would stand as the pinnacle of British luxury motoring, offering the world’s most exclusive driving experience. They have responded to this challenge with real passion and the result is a luxury grand tourer that sets new standards in terms of comfort, effortless performance and hand-crafted refinement – the very qualities for which Bentley is renowned.”
Dirk van Braeckel, who heads up the Bentley design team, added, “From the very first hand sketches in the styling studio, we were inspired by the traditions of the grand touring Bentleys and have sought to evolve this story for a new generation of Bentley enthusiasts.”
As for the ‘Mulsanne’ name, it is a fitting tribute to the company’s racing pedigree at Le Mans, the scene of six Bentley victories.
The Bentley Mulsanne will go on sale from mid 2010.
Text: Charis Whitcombe
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