Many automotive manufacturers have a rich history in both racing and general car production. However, very few have one quite like Bentley's. They have partaken in all things motorsports at the beginning of their inception, made luxury cars, and even special one-offs.
Since Bentley's founding in 1919, exactly one-hundred years ago, they've garnered a large fanbase and a sufficient market share of luxury vehicles. Their name has become a worldwide sensation and so have their cars. With this in mind, these ten Bentley's are some of the most beautiful and successful ones ever made...
You may have never heard of this Bentley, but that's for good reason. The Hunaudières was never released for the general public, however, there was a working model that gathered some interest.
What makes the Hunaudières so special is its bold design. Bentley is mostly known for their luxury vehicles, so the Hunaudières was a very brave move from Bentley executives. Although it has a strange look and never made it to the market, the Hunaudières was a critical part of Bentley's gradual move towards more 'sporty' cars.
Like the Hunaudières, Bentley decided to deploy a market penetration strategy to gain more customers/sales. This was done by creating an S.U.V. to combat companies like Rolls Royce, Porsche, and Mercedes: Called the Bentayga.
Once again, Bentley's choice was a bold one. Although, unlike the previous attempt, the Bentayga was successful. Not only does it do well in sales, but it also looks pretty good too. Along with this, the Bentayga comes with a staggering 6-liter V12 producing around 600 horsepower.
Now, trips to the grocery store can be comfortable and fast, especially with a brand new Bentley.
Back in the late 80s to the early 90s, Bentley Motors decided to bring their turbo-charged Mulsanne's engine into its own, newer, body style. Thus, the Bentley Turbo R was born and well-received by audiences.
The Bentley Turbo R was very quick; It had a turbocharged V8 and a relatively lightweight body (Compared to other Bentleys and luxury cars). The Turbo R even branched out into more trims like the Turbo S, Turbo RT, and the new Turbo R. Nowadays, just about anyone can afford a classic Turbo R for around $20,000. Not too bad for a luxury sports car.
When people think of 1930's styled cars and what bad guys in films like Indiana Jones drove, odds are they are thinking of something like the Bentley 8 Liter. The 8 Liter is the quintessential 30s styled automobile with a wide cabin, dark colors, and huge front-grill.
Sadly though, the 8 Liter was released during the Great Depression. This meant that Bentley was unable to sell many and only made one-hundred of them. Back then they sold for a mere £1,850, now an 8 Liter is hundred of thousands, if not millions. At least they are appreciated now as works of art and not relegated to the dark corners of history.
Produced in 2005, the Bentley Flying Spur has been (another) resounding success. So much so that Bentley still produces the Flying Spur to this day. The Flying Spur is, essentially, a sedan version of their popular Continental GT. Thus, the Flying Spur has a fair bit of 'get-up-and-go.'
The first generation of Flying Spurs sold so well that the same body style from 2005 lasted up until 2013 before any significant changes. The newer second-generation Flying Spur has more impressive figures too with Bentley stating that the 2020 Flying Spur will supposedly reach 207 miles-per-hour.
Long-time fans of the B.B.C. series Top Gear may be familiar with the Arnage T. The previous host, Jeremy Clarkson, gave the Arnage T a glowing review back in 2009. The Arnage was a result of Volkswagen's purchasing of Bentley in which they tried to bring their faster side and racing heritage to the forefront.
With Volkswagen's help, the Bentley Arnage T almost acts like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, since it posses a duel-personality of sorts. It's calm and collected when it needs to be and drift happy track toy on another day.
What could possibly oppose something like a Rolls Royce Phantom or Ghost? Well, look no further than the Bentley Mulsanne: The direct competitor to Rolls Royce's high-end models.
The Mulsanne is one of Bentley's most expensive models. Most range from anywhere between $270,000 to $350,000. If high-end luxury is the goal, then the Mulsanne will surely meet its criteria. Especially since the Mulsanne is a bonafide personal limousine.
Sometimes the most interesting ideas on paper don't end up being the most successful in practice. This exact situation embodies the 1929 Birkin Blower. Even though it was super-charged and took place in the historical Le Mans race, the Blower never actually won.
Regardless, the Birkin Blower was the purest form of infantile racing in the '30s. It's looks were both race-like and luxurious for the time. Although the Blower never really won a race, it's still an important piece of racing history and, as such, has sold for millions at an auction in recent years.
For a brief period in time, Bentley wanted a piece of the Le Mans LMP pie. So, they decided to take their experience in motor sports, and a large budget, to create a Le Mans LMP GTP car named the Speed 8. Marking Bentley's return to Le Mans after over seventy years.
The Speed 8 was in competition from 2001 to 2003 and managed to snag an impressive first place each year. That's quite a triumphant return for such a long gap, proving once and for all that Bentley is still an automotive giant.
This reason, and the Speed 8's sleek looks, is one of the largest factors as to why a non-street legal car is number two on the list.
Modern technology allows for some amazing inventions to come out and completely revolutionize their respective industries. In Bentley's case, the brand new Continental GT is just that with a collection of jaw-dropping appearances and stunning performance figures.
The Continental GT can have over 700 horsepower (Depending on the package) with either a V8 or V12. Along with this, the Continental GT is a top-in-class in terms of luxury, comfort, driver assistance, and unrivaled accessories. The brand new 2020 Continental GT seems to have even more to offer, which bodes very well for the future of luxury sports cars.