New for 2015
For 2015 the Bentley Flying Spur gains the Continental’s 4.0-liter, twin-turbo V-8, increasing range while still delivering plenty of power; a red center on the Bentley wing badges; eucalyptus wood veneer; seating for five; and chrome exhaust tips.
The Bentley Flying Spur (formerly known as the Continental Flying Spur) is a four-door luxury sedan with a pair of powerful engines sending power to all four wheels and luxury befitting those who prefer to be driven. The Flying Spur shares powerplants with the Continental GT but was more closely related in previous generations.
The 2015 Bentley Flying Spur is powered by a twin-turbocharged, 4.0-liter V-8 in V8 models, which produces 500 hp and 487 lb-ft of torque and sends that power to all four wheels via a ZF eight-speed automatic. Bentley touts improved efficiency, which seems rather superfluous to the average Bentley shopper, but the increased range that naturally follows means more time between fill ups, which are an inconvenience for anyone in a hurry. EPA estimates for the V-8 are 14/24 mpg city/highway with a total range of 408 miles. Buyers of the more powerful Flying Spur (non-V8) are treated to a twin-turbocharged, 6.0-liter W-12 that produces 616 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. It uses the same transmission and AWD system for an EPA estimated 12/20 mpg with a range of only 360 miles.
The Bentley Flying Spur is one of the first models in a long time that “doesn’t feel like a train” but delivers sport and luxury in the same strokes. Inside, heated, ventilated, and massaging seats are complemented by twin front armrests. Passengers are treated to an incredibly crisp Naim audio system and a multitude of two-tone optional interior colors. Outside, HID headlights and LED taillights are as attractive as they are functional, and air springs provide continuous damping and electronic height control.
What We Think
In a Driven Review of a 2015 Bentley Flying Spur V8, we said: “Where the W-12 delivers irresistible power with turbinelike smoothness, the V-8 is alert and alive, twisting tighter with a refreshing cadence of sound as the tachometer needle swings around the dial. You’re aware of the way the engine rpm changes as the eight-speed automatic transmission does its work, and this newfound personality brings this Bentley sedan alive. Suddenly the Flying Spur feels like a car, not a locomotive.” The Flying Spur is not only luxurious but also takes after the Continental GT and delivers a generous helping of capability and sportiness. In the same Review we said: “The Flying Spur rides well, though sharp impacts can still be felt. The brakes were ready to do business, and the long-travel throttle pedal helped us to get just the right kind of power from the 500-hp V-8. You can make this car almost dart back and forth on the lanes, and it has a secret hoodlum personality that made us want to do donuts on the lawn in front of the Georgian manor house at the estate of Coworth Park, where we stopped for tea.”
With the entry price just a hair under $200,000, the Bentley Flying Spur will likely bring some business to Mercedes-Benz as the S-Class closes in on the stratospheric prices that used to consist solely of special editions and low-volume automakers. Models like the Mercedes-Maybach S600 will bring the typically mainstream automaker into Bentley territory, but we think a few more shoppers will be swayed to join the Bentley ranks, as well.
- More range from the V-8
- Flying Spur that feels like it was made for flying (figuratively)
- Opulent and sporty with room for rear seat passengers
You Won’t Like
- At almost $200,000 the V8 doesn’t get standard ventilated/massaging seats
- For the chauffer crowd, the rear seat isn’t innovative, merely matching the segment
- Mercedes-Maybach S600
- BMW 7 Series
- Aston Martin Rapide S
- Audi S8
- Rolls-Royce Ghost