In the rarified air over mainstream luxury-brand front-runners from Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and also BMW exist the ultra-exclusive, hand-built sedans from Rolls-Royce, Aston Martin, as well as Bentley, each offering 12-cylinder power, the optimal product furnishings, and also indubitable pedigrees. Provided these cars' unapologetic cost, a typical individual might expect them to surpass any kind of off-the-rack Audi A8, S-class Benz, or 7-series Bimmer in every regard. Or at the very least most areas. Or at the very least in regards to the high-end features, right?
Well, people, who acquire vehicles like the sparkling gold 2017 Bentley Flying Spur V8 S examined here typically aren't regular. When they make a decision to buy a Flying Spur, it's not to include a brand-new luxury car to their steady; it's to add a Bentley to their steady. They're possibly mindful that any one of those hypercompetent Teutonic sleds supplies more state-of-the-art Luxo-wizardry compared to the Flying Spur, which does not also include a USB port; undoubtedly, they probably have one of those German cars, too. As well as few would certainly ever obtain caught baiting an S63, M760i, or S8-- each of which can strike 60 miles per hour in 3.8 seconds or much less-- into a traffic light duel, so where this car's efficiency numbers fall about those could be beside the point.
What does matter is that the Flying Spur supplies on its assurance as a Bentley with the waft, the heat, as well as the distinguished gracefulness for which the brand's cars and trucks have been understood for decades? Based on the previous-generation Continental GT, the Flying Spur car has shown satisfying in that regard given that initial showing up in 2005-- as well as especially so since the second-gen design showed up for 2014 with an even prettier, sleeker body and a more powerful, 616-hp W-12 engine.
We were thrilled after our first drive of the lighter, less expensive Flying Spur V8, which lost specifically none of its Bentley-ness with the fitment of the Volkswagen Group's ubiquitous 4.0-liter eight-cylinder, tuned to create a stout 500 horsepower. The Flying Spur family doubled in dimension when V8 S and W12 S models were presented in 2014, raising horsepower to 521 and also 626 and featuring a one-of-a-kind front-fascia style, a back diffuser, and also black-painted grilles. Having already mentioned our preference for the Flying Spur V8's relative agility and also throatier audio, we hypothesized that the V8 S would be one of the most compelling from a driving perspective.
As unimportant as realities as well as numbers may be to the normal Bentley proprietor, one variety of certain effect is 5509-- the extra pounds this examination car brought onto our ranges, 55.1 percent of the overall thing on the front wheels. On one hand, that makes its 4.3-second zero-to-60-mph and also 10.5-second zero-to-100-mph times that a lot more remarkable; same with the 167-foot quit from 70 miles per hour. Yet at the skidpad, the low-profile 275/35ZR -21 Pirelli P Zeros that wrapped the V8 S's optional 21-inch six-spoke wheels were bewildered after just 0.83 g of side acceleration. As well as in spite of the typical all-wheel-drive system sending 60 percent of the offered torque to the rear wheels, understeer lingered at the limit.
Simple and easy high-speed travel has actually always been a mark of a Bentley, and also the V8 S fulfills this objective remarkably. The auto feels marvelously fast off the line. While absolutely nothing tends to take place instantly in a Bentley-- that's all part of the waft-- the V8 S is tuned for sharper throttle response, which permits it not just to reach 50 miles per hour in simply 2.6 secs from a 30-mph lope, however also to feel usually sharp, which isn't something we've always been able to state concerning these hulking high-end vehicles.
And also speed achieved is speed kept with steadfast security, also deep into the triple-digit region, with sharp guiding that tightens up considerably when the sportiest of the four chassis settings has been selected. The automobile's massive dimension-- the wheel but, again, there's more to this car than its test results or even the subjective feel of how it drives. As we stated in a write-up of the previous-generation Flying Spur Speed, "Every drive in the Bentley is an escape from reality, an occasion." Staying true to form, the V8 S is best when one's senses are directed toward enjoying its sumptuous seats, tickling the knurled shift knob, or identifying those details-- the subtle gathers in the upholstery or variations in the stitching-- that communicate that these things really are built by hand. The interior design may have grown familiar, and you won't find many of the new whiz-bang features that are all the rage just one car class below, but the Flying Spur remains beyond reproach in terms of material honesty-- nary a thing inside this car isn't exactly what it looks like. It's also a sea of tranquility: With just 62 audible decibels at a 70-mph cruise, the Flying Spur is one of the quietest sedans on the planet.
With a starting MSRP of $208,725, the V8 S is exactly $16,000 pricier than the standard Flying Spur V8. Our test example brought to the party another $26K worth of options, more than we 'd care to rattle off here and only one of which-- a $3360 set of 21-inch wheels-- had any bearing on performance. Still, a few are worth mentioning if only because their prices strain credulity. For example, this car's darkened headlamp bezels and taillamp lenses (the sort of thing one might think would be included in the S treatment) added $1805 to the final tally. Bentley doesn't charge any extra for this example's polarizing Camel paint, which reads as bronze from a few paces away but upon close inspection sparkles with every color in the rainbow; painting the brake calipers black cost $1555, however. And we 'd love to know if there's any material-cost-related reason for Bentley to charge $2190 to use a contrasting color thread to stitch the seat upholstery and the steering wheel leather. But there we are thinking like normal people again.
So the Flying Spur isn't exactly state-of-the-art, although, in V8 S form, it is somewhat more focused from a driving standpoint. Heavy yet still quite fast, it is as graceful as every Bentley ought to be. And as we hypothesized, it's the most engaging Flying Spur we've driven yet. But Bentley sedans won't be like this forever. From what we can gather after seeing the lovely new 2019 Continental GT debut and after interviewing Bentley's boss, Wolfgang Dürheimer, this car's eventual replacement is likely to be far more futuristic-- and possibly electrified-- so we ought to savor its big, heavy Bentley-ness while we still can.lbase alone extends more than 10 feet-- as well as vast weight maintain it from being much enjoyable on a twisty roadway, but in contours the body stays heroically flat, making it feel a lot more grown compared to expected. And the brake-pedal feel is utterly perfect.