Bentley have recently been suffering from the austerity felt in the UK, and it is not necessarily that people cannot afford their cars but it is more that they don’t want to buy them.
People who can afford Bentley’s are concerned that they might send out the wrong message at a time when many people are facing financial hardship. There is already a great amount of resentment in the UK towards high-paid executives and they are nervous about attracting more wrath by purchasing such a luxurious car.
The image of the car, which is synonymous with wealth and leisure, doesn’t really match up with the economic times of the UK. Despite this, it is important to remember that Bentley being in business means that over 3000 factory workers can keep their jobs. It is also estimated that outside of the plant there are over 100 people whose employment is directly due to Bentley.
The relaunch of the Bentley Continental has been expected for some time and it has largely been conducted to replace the electronics within the car. This new model is based on the same one as before but it has been redesigned in almost every way. The new design looks as if it has kept everything great about the previous car and tweaked it just a little bit.
One thing that really stands out in the car are its wing mirrors and this is not for all the right reasons. They are large and unattractive, but unfortunately Bentley couldn’t really do anything about it. They are so large because legislation on how the wing mirrors have to be designed varies worldwide.
There are numerous updates to the performance of the car and it is very clear how the new chief engineer at Bentley, Ulrich Eichorn, has added his own touch to the vehicle. The suspension has been entirely changed too and the wheels have also been enlarged.
The engine has remained largely the same and is still the enormous six litre beast that was seen in the previous version. It is expected that a toned down version of the car with a four litre engine is going to be released at some point in 2013.
Most of the redesign seems to have gone into the inside of the car however, and the seats feel even more supportive and comfortable than they did before. The dashboard has also been redesigned and is easy to use as well as being attractive. The car does have plenty of room inside and four adults can fit in easily. However, it is clear the car is more designed for the people in the front.
The car is not designed perfectly though and the doors still feel overly heavy and hard to close. Furthermore despite the comfort of the seats, the seat belts feel as if they are trying to bind you into the seat.
The engine of the car is enormously powerful and hills will feel as if they are just not there. The car can overtake with complete ease even up steep inclines. The engine doesn’t sound fantastic but when you consider how large the car is and how fast it can go you won’t really mind.
The brakes are not as responsive as the engine and they will need to be used to be more forcefully than you might be used to if you have been driving a lighter car. If you don’t really feel like pressing on the brakes too hard then you can opt for an upgrade to ceramic brakes. These will cost you an extra £10,000 though, but when you consider the cost of the car this isn’t a huge expense.