Allow us to introduce you to the aptly named Bentley Mulsanne ‘Speed’. Aptly named because this is Bentley’s fastest ever Mulsanne, which undoubtedly gives driver and passenger the same feeling as you’d experience while hurtling through hyperspace in a plushly decorated Millennium Falcon. Under the bonnet is a tuned 6.75L V8 producing 520 bhp and 1,100Nm, a powertrain which will deliver you from a standstill to 100km/h in a mere 4.9 seconds. In a room on wheels.
We won’t pretend to understand the Bentley engineers’ tinkering, but they’ve re-calibrated the engine management system and the gearbox, meaning torque is available the moment you push down on the throttle. There’s also a new ‘S’ mode, which keeps the engine revving above 2,000rpm, meaning the turbochargers are always ready to do their thing.
And it’s a Bentley, so expect an interior furnished to a degree greater than most people’s homes (think quilted panels and seats), four new paint colours, a 60GB hard drive for music and films, electronic tables, a frosted bottle cooler (including bespoke champagne glasses), and a 14-speaker 2,200W audio system. And that’s just a few items on the list.
It’s a beautiful car, matched by even more beautiful power stats. It does seem a little wasted, however. If stereotypes are anything to go by, then many of the Mulsanne’s buyers will be in the back seat, drinking chilled champagne and relaxing to the dulcet notes of Bach or Beethoven. At least the chauffeur will be happy.