1993 Bentley Continental R Two Door Coupe
Chassis no. SCBZB03D4PCX42042
By the end of the 1970s, Bentleys accounted for a mere 3% of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars' production; clearly a situation which could not be tolerated if the once-famous marque was to avoid extinction. The solution was to seek to re-establish Bentley's credentials as the purveyor of high-performance luxury cars and, in a move calculated to evoke memories of the company's glorious past achievements at Le Mans, the name 'Mulsanne' was chosen for the Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit's counterpart. This strategy would succeed brilliantly. Launched at the Geneva Motor Show in March 1982, the Mulsanne Turbo provoked a rash of headlines in the motoring press hailing the return of the 'Blower Bentley' - the 'Silent Sports Car' was back.
Bentley's 1980s resurgence had hitherto relied exclusively on models whose basic architecture was shared with other Rolls-Royce products; but on display at Geneva in '85 was 'Project 90', a mocked-up coupé intended to gauge public response to the idea of a high-performance car unique to Bentley. When the real thing - the Bentley Continental R - was unveiled six years later, the waiting crowd burst into spontaneous applause. Styled with the assistance of consultants John Heffernan and Ken Greenley at Worthing-based International Automotive Design, the Continental R benefited from computer-aided design and wind tunnel testing in the devising of its sleekly streamlined shape. Despite the need to incorporate non-traditional features such as doors recessed into the roof, the result looked every bit a Bentley, albeit one restated for the 1990s. Also new was the gearbox, a four-speed automatic with an 'overdrive' top ratio, but the main focus of interest was the newcomer's performance. Needless to say this was outstanding, the combination of the 325bhp Turbo R engine in the new wind-cheating shape cutting the 0-60mph time to under 7 seconds and boosting top speed to around 150mph.
A successor truly worthy of the name Continental, the modern 'R' was built in similarly limited numbers, by today's standards, and to similarly high standards. The car we offer dates from early in the series, 1993, and is a spectacular example.
Beautifully presented in Bordeaux paint with a plush magnolia hide interior, and showing a little under 40,000 miles, this U.S. delivered car remains in extremely fine shape. Its interior is immaculate and shows little wear at all, and its exterior paint being unblemished and retaining factory sheen. Benefiting from a fresh service by locally based Executive Motor Works in Florida, the car is reported by both local experts and its owner to drive 'as new' and perform faultlessly.
- Please note that this vehicle is titled with make Rolls-Royce.