To Drive or Be Driven | 2020 Bentley Flying Spur Is For Those Looking To Write Their Own Paths
Photos and words by Atif Kazmi for Por Homme
The view from the bi-level penthouse of the newly renovated Hotel de Paris in Monaco is tremendous. The street right below plays host to the Monaco Grand Prix every May while the Monaco Yacht Club sits right past it. The palace sits out in the distance and tourists can be seen taking photos and going in and out of Hermes and other boutiques that line Avenue de Monte-Carlo. And even with all the luxurious touches throughout the square-mile city-state, there’s nothing quite like seeing the sun rise over the Mediterranean. The Hotel’s renovation was a four-year project that ran the bill up to nearly $300 million, with the ultimate goal being to modernize the iconic establishment while preserving what made it so special in the first place. With the introduction of the all-new 2020 Bentley Flying Spur, the goals were similar and just as ambitious.
With a 100-year legacy on the line, anything Bentley does now is met with scrutiny. Loyalists are holding on to the brand’s storied history while a younger generation is waiting to be pulled in with technology and a future-thinking approach to luxury. JP Gregory, Head of Exterior Design for Bentley, and his team have been up for the task and they’ve already proven themselves through the success of the all-new Bentley Continental GT. But although many of our favorites elements of the GT have made their way into here, the Flying Spur is focused on an experience that’s as engaging for the driver as it is for the folks in the back. It’s like a double-sided coin where losing isn’t even an option.
Those looking to purchase the all-new Flying Spur understand this quite well. They’ve put in countless days and nights to achieve the highest level of success and aren’t showing any signs of letting up. They’ve also been the ones flipping the coin and writing their own paths in the process. For the journey, there’s no alternative as versatile.
The all-aluminum body work is a massive shift from past generation Flying Spurs, making this the most nimble Flying Spur to date. Muscular fenders give it a confidence stance and the lightweight structure helps translate the W12’s monstrous performance figures into numbers that are startling for a sedan of this stature. The 626 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque give the all-new Flying Spur a top speed of 207 mph and a 0-to-60 time of just 3.7 seconds. The engine’s got an intelligent cylinder deactivation system that delivers a 500-mile driving range and fifteen percent more efficiency over the outgoing model.
Help from various innovative features makes driving the 2020 Bentley Flying Spur more enjoyable and easier. All Wheel Steering helps with the car’s turning circle at low speeds and delivers more agility and maneuverability on the open road with less steering effort. Blend this with the luxury sedan’s All-Wheel Drive system and Bentley Dynamic Ride and how you drive it has become as bespoke and customized as its interior.
Our time with the Flying Spur throughout the South of France had us maneuvering through tight, winding roads as well as open highways. We drove but also gave the reigns so that we could be driven. It’s remarkable that the invisible veil between the front and rear makes for such a stark contrast between the two. Everything you see from the driver’s seat caters to the driving experience while there isn’t an element or amenity you can’t access or adjust from the back seats. The touchscreen ejects as the press of a button and quite literally puts everything in to the hands of the person being driven. This includes everything from controlling the glass-to-glass panoramic sunroof to just about anything you might normally access from the 12.3-inch Central Display that’s a part of the Bentley Rotating Display up front.
The luxury sedan’s interior features a contemporary design that’s balancing innovation with contemporary, impeccably-crafted detailing. The Bentley Rotating Display may be the first thing to grab your attention but there’s plenty more to keep you there. The quilting design in the seats and doors pulls inspiration from what we’ve seen in the new Bentley GT but has it going all the way through in a way that adds more richness and 3D dimensionality. If you’re looking for even more depth, opt for the 19-speaker Naim audio system.
Bentley’s commitment to the next 100 years goes beyond the cars and SUVs that ultimately land on the roads. The process and resources used to bring them to life matters also. That’s why our friends in Crewe have announced the completion of UK’s largest ever solar car port at the Bentley factory. It covers over 1,300 parking spaces and ensures that all electricity used to manufacture every Bentley is solar or certified green.
The introduction of the 2020 Bentley Flying Spur proves that true luxury is uncompromising. It’s also the finishing touch on what has been a remarkable year for the iconic British brand. See more of the Flying Spur in the gallery and look for it to land in Bentley showrooms soon.