If you're a Bentley dealer in the Middle East, you've got it easy. With mounds of disposable income littering that part of the world, it's a prime target for high-end luxury brands. To that end, Bentley has announced a special run of 50 Continental Flying Spur sedans that will only be available in the Middle East. Called the Flying Spur Arabia and Flying Spur Speed Arabia, these two special editions feature special Arabia badges on their fenders, door sills and ash-tray lid. The non-Speed Flying Spur also gets a new unique 14-spoke wheel design while the higher performance Speed model (above) gets 20-inch, ten-spoke wheels.
Bentley says the Middle East now accounts for one-tenth of its worldwide sales and supports the region with nine dealers. No doubt we can expect more of these special editions to come from Bentley and other brands both in the Middle East and China, as both markets become increasingly important to ultra high-end automakers.
* Bentley Motors launches two unique special-edition Continental models for the Middle East
* A total of only 50 Continental Flying Spur Arabia and Continental Flying Spur Speed Arabia cars will be built
(Crewe, England) Bentley Motors has unveiled two unique Continental models, which have been engineered and designed exclusively for the Middle East market. These special edition cars have been created at Bentley's Crewe headquarters with both models offering a range of striking features specially commissioned for Arabic customers.
The Middle East market now represents 10 per cent of Bentley retail sales globally and has doubled its contribution to the worldwide percentage of sales over the last five years. This trend has continued despite the recent global recession.
From Bentley's first dealership in Dubai, the network has grown to become nine-strong in 2010, with dealers in Dubai, Doha, Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Jeddah, Riyadh and Al Khobar. These two new models have been launched specifically for this unique market.
The Continental Flying Spur Arabia and the Continental Flying Spur Speed Arabia retain all the potent performance of the company's Continental Flying Spur and Spur Speed, the world's fastest luxury four-door saloon, but with a range of additional exterior and interior features to create the ultimate in distinguished, elegant driving developed for the Arabic market.
Both cars are further distinguished by some subtle exterior and interior 'Arabia' motifs. These include an exterior front fender badge, tread plate and ashtray lid badge – all bearing the Arabia signature.
The class-leading performance of the W12, 6-litre engine is in no way diminished. The Flying Spur Arabia is capable of achieving a potential top speed of 312 km/h and a 0-100 km/h sprint time of just 4.9 seconds. The Flying Spur Speed Arabia offers a more powerful 600 bhp (610 ps, 449 kW) version of Bentley's highly acclaimed W12 with 553 lb-ft (750 Nm) of torque. This is a 9 per cent increase in power and 15 per cent increase in torque over its sister model, and will drive from 0-100 km/h in 4.8 seconds with a top speed of 322 km/h.
Unique wheels are also offered on both models. The Continental Flying Spur Arabia is designed with an elegant 14-spoke diamond alloy wheel, which has incredible strength through a small surface area and allows the best possible flow of air to the brake discs.
For the Continental Flying Spur Speed Arabia, vibrant and sporty, bright silver, 10-spoke, 20-inch wheels are included, and are also compatible with optional carbon ceramic brakes.
Bentley's ability to add extra, well-executed touches of luxury can be found in the ventilated fluted seats that effectively cool and warm the body, helping driver and passengers always to stay comfortable. The craftsmanship features which are synonymous with the Bentley name also include veneered picnic tables to the rear of front seats inset with vanity mirrors, chrome inlay strips to the door waistrails and deep-pile carpet mats with hide trimming. To surprise and delight the customer, even the fuel cap has been designed with jewellery in mind and is engineered in bright chrome with the famous 'B' badge.
For convenience, an additional valet key is offered with limited functionality that allows the car to be driven without giving access to the boot or glove box. This provides secure storage of personal belongings when using valet parking services.
Further options that offer the luxury and refinement to the customer include Adaptive Cruise Control with 'follow to stop feature', a rear-view camera, the iPod interface linked to the infotainment system and privacy phone handsets in the front and rear of the car.
Geoff Dowding, Regional Director, Asia and Middle East, comments:
"We have created these exclusive new models for our Arabic customers in recognition of the growing importance of these influential customers. Bentley has a long and proud tradition of being able to design, engineer and personalise our cars to the individual styling and driving tastes of our customers and these special-edition Bentleys showcase these skills for the Middle East Market".