Usually we're not too excited when we get a company's entry level car to review, but in Bentley's case we made an exception for the Continental Flying Spur. We still have hopes to one day get in an Arnage, the Britsh marque's true range topper with a price tag in the range of $220,000 to $250,000.
The Arnage sedan gets powertrain attention for model year 2007, which it very much needed. The 6.75-liter twin-turbo V8 in the Arnage T now makes a nice, round 500 bhp and enough torque to accelerate out of a black hole – 738 ft-lbs. Power climbs from 400 to 450 bhp in the Arnage R and long wheelbase RL, while torque goes up to 645 ft lbs. All Arnages also get a new ZF six-speed automatic that replaces the previous car's dated four-speed.
Work began on these powertrain upgrade over two years ago after Bentley significantly upgraded the Arnage's chassis, steering and brakes. Since then the car's been able to handle the kind of power it will now finally be producing. There are other minor upgrades for the Arnage in 2007 that are listed in the press release after the jump, though our favorite is the optional retracting 'Flying B' bonnet mascot.
Seriously, we're dialing the phone right now.
(More high res photos can be found after the jump)
2007 Model Year Bentley Arnage
Bentley Motors continues the intensive development of its flagship Arnage range with the introduction of a major programme of powertrain and chassis enhancements for the 2007 Model Year. The Arnage's renowned 6.75-litre V8 engine now develops up to 500bhp and is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission benefiting performance, driving dynamics and refinement. The powertrain changes are complemented by subtle exterior, interior and under-bonnet design cues.
Key to this performance increase is the most powerful version of Bentley's legendary V8 engine ever built at the company's headquarters in Crewe, England. In the performance-oriented Arnage T model, the revised twin-turbocharged V8 engine produces a staggering 500bhp and 1000Nm of torque – an 11percent increase in power and a 14 percent increase in torque over the outgoing model. Twinned with the latest six-speed ZF automatic transmission, which uses state-of-the-art computer management, performance and refinement are optimised at all speeds. In the Arnage R and RL models the new engine is boosted from 400 to 450bhp, while torque climbs from 835 to 875Nm.
"The 2007 Model Year Arnage range is clear evidence of our intent to ensure Bentley's flagship model remains at the forefront of technology and delivers the performance, refinement and luxury that every Bentley customer demands," explains Stuart McCullough, Member of the Board, Sales and Marketing.
The 500bhp Arnage T is a true driver's car with much higher performance and delivers an even more rewarding driving experience. The improvements to the refinement and comfort of the 450bhp Arnage R are equally striking, while the long-wheelbase RL shares the same increased power output together with major improvements to the rear passenger cabin.
"Two years ago we introduced major upgrades to the Arnage's chassis, steering and brakes," says Dr Ulrich Eichhorn, Member of the Board, Engineering. "Those improvements meant the car could easily handle a significant increase in power and torque, so work began on this important powertrain programme."
The 2007 Model Year Arnage also benefits from safety, interior and design improvements. Every Arnage now has a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System, rSAP Bluetooth integrated telephone system and improved driver ergonomics as standard. Additionally, new wheel, exterior paint colour and interior trim options are available, as well as an optional retractable 'Flying B' bonnet mascot.
The new 2007 Model Year Bentley Arnage range will go on sale from September 2006.