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Bentley Flying Spur

New from £173,455

Petrol or petrol plug-in hybrid
4 or 5 seats
4 doors
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Is the Bentley Flying Spur Saloon a good car?

Read our expert review

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Words by: Erin Baker

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Additional words by: Dan Trent

"The Flying Spur is essentially a four-door version of the immensely popular Continental GT. Built to be driven or be driven in, the Flying Spur is packed with leather, wood and acres of well-appointed space, and is now available with an Odyssean Edition version trimmed with sustainable materials for a socially conscious twist on luxury convention. Take your pick of powerful W12 and V8 petrol engines or the plug-in hybrid version featuring an electrically boosted V6 engine."

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Running costs for a Bentley Flying Spur


Finances matter to everyone, even Bentley owners. Woods sourced by global veneer hunters from ancient mangrove swamps and crafted by hand don’t come cheap. So, neither does this car, the price tag for which is well into six figures. Even with the W12 petrol version’s clever fuel-saving tech (it runs for much of the time on just six of its 12 cylinders) you will spend an awful lot of money at the filling station. Our advice would be to plump for the Hybrid for an equal dose of luxury but without quite so much time spent pouring expensive petrol into the tank. With an average journey distance in the UK of around seven miles you could find most of your time is spent in electric mode, which will drastically reduce your costs. Just make sure you recharge at home each night on an off-peak tariff. Watch the options list though, because Bentley makes it easy to get carried away and you can quickly add tens of thousands to your bill.

Reliability of a Bentley Flying Spur


Bentley is owned by Volkswagen, which also owns Porsche, Audi and many other brands, but Bentley tends to collaborate with these two more performance-oriented marques. That means tried and tested parts and engineering trickery, including the 48V system working across the chassis to eliminate much body roll. It also means much of the switchgear and electronics inside, although bearing Bentley styling, are from other models across the range. Reports for the brand are mixed: while it has appeared at the bottom of used-car reliability indexes, the Continental GT, on which this car is based, has more favourable reports from owners

Safety for a Bentley Flying Spur


The Flying Spur gets four-wheel drive as standard, which helps with traction in slippery conditions and gives a certain peace of mind. Driver assistance systems include a night-vision infrared camera, blind spot warning, head-up display and traffic assist alerts. It’s also a big, heavy car, which will help in a collision.

How comfortable is the Bentley Flying Spur


Bentley beats everyone, including Rolls-Royce, hands down when it comes to interiors. The introduction of the Odyssean Edition, which uses eco-friendly materials such as open-pore wood veneers and tweed on the seats, puts it even further in the lead. If you prefer more traditional materials hides can be specified in contrasting colours for the steering wheel, doors and seats, and every seam is painstakingly hand-sewn. The wood veneers are sourced from sustainable forests and the grains match to create flowing surfaces; you can choose one material or split the dashboard horizontally and choose two different finishes. New to this generation of the Flying Spur is a 3D leather treatment, which creates a raised diamond pattern on the upholstery’s surface as it flows along the doors, petering out as it reaches the edges. The effect is beautiful and contemporary, and a similar treatment for wood follows. In the rear of the car, there is plenty of room for two adults - the Flying Spur is longer than an extended-wheelbase Audi A8, so there’s no need to offer a longer Flying Spur. Both rear seats have their own power adjustment, and between them the central squab folds down to reveal a fridge in the back and two cup holders. It’s also quiet enough on the motorway to hear your hand brushing the leather steering wheel.

Features of the Bentley Flying Spur


There’s a lot of fun stuff on the new Flying Spur, but most of it is optional. The only big toy which is standard is the touch-screen remote controller, a beautiful, heavy piece of kit. Nestled in a holder in a console between the rear seats, you touch the arrow on the screen to eject it from its cradle, and use it to control all the comfort functions like the audio, ventilation, apps and so on. Also standard is the large front touch-screen, Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth and Wifi and 10-speaker audio system. The rotating display in the front dash is an attractive option. Controlled by a little button labelled “screen”, it rotates between the digital touchscreen, three analogue dials and a blank fascia for a total digital detox. Mood lighting, rear-seat entertainment screens, adaptive cruise control, leather headliner and a Bang and Olufsen audio system are all options. Upgrade all the way to Naim if you can for a truly awesome audio experience.

Power for a Bentley Flying Spur


We've tested the 6.0-litre W12 and V8 petrol versions as well as the Hybrid, the latter a plug-in with a V6 engine and usable electric-only range of over 30 miles. Undoubtedly, this is one to go for. Floating smoothly around in a large Bentley in complete silence is a stunningly serene experience, plus you have that boost of acceleration off the line. The V8 engine option is also a luxurious unit, with plenty of power for most people's daily needs, and better fuel economy than the W12. If, however, it's the no expense spared version you're after, Bentley’s legendary W12 engine remains one of the cleverest out there. It can run on six of its 12 cylinders with a light foot on the accelerator, saving fuel and emissions. It also has two turbos to smooth out the power, and is now linked to a dual-clutch automatic transmission for silky-smooth shifts. The result is 0-62mph in 3.8 seconds and a top speed of 207mph, which are extraordinary numbers for a car weighing over two tonnes.

Standard equipment

Expect the following equipment on your Bentley Flying Spur Saloon. This may vary between trim levels.

Other vehicles in the Flying Spur family

Continental Convertible

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    Sumptuous interior

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    Very comfortable

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    Effortless power

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