New for 2015
The Bentley Mulsanne Speed features more power from the twin-turbo V-8, better efficiency, and a sportier revision to the ZF eight-speed transmission. Additionally, the Speed model sees suspension revisions, giving the big sedan more body control and delivering more communicative steering. Both the Mulsanne and Mulsanne Speed models also see revisions to the cylinder deactivation system.
The Bentley Mulsanne is the current flagship sedan of the automaker’s lineup, with two available models, the standard luxurious Mulsanne and the higher-performance Mulsanne Speed. The two models split the difference between being driven and choosing to drive yourself, neither compromising the things that make the Mulsanne a Bentley.
The 2015 Bentley Mulsanne is powered by a twin-turbocharged 6.8-liter V-8, which is paired with a ZF eight-speed automatic that drives the rear wheels. Power is delivered barely off idle in both models, with the standard Mulsanne producing 505 hp and 752 lb-ft of torque, with the latter figure produced at just 1750 rpm. Mulsanne Speed model gets a new combustion chamber, spark plug position, inlet ports, fuel injectors, revised variable valve timing, and revisions to the turbochargers to produce 530 hp and 811 lb-ft of torque, also at 1750 rpm. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 11/18 mpg (city/highway), which places it at the bottom of its segment according to the EPA, saddling it with a $3,700 gas guzzler tax.
The Bentley Mulsanne sits at the pinnacle of the automaker’s portfolio, and is optioned accordingly, with features such as heated/ventilation/massage for front/rear seats, a refrigerated champagne cooler, veneered iPad picnic tables, a six-disc DVD player, rear seat entertainment, WiFi hotspot, black privacy curtains to the rear cabin, and a Naim-for-Bentley sound system.
Customizing the Mulsanne allows one to have a truly unique vehicle, with options from using veneers cut from a tree on your property, to custom-built jewelry trays, or even a functional cigar humidor. For those with unlimited budgets, nothing will prevent the craftsmen of Crewe from creating a beautiful, capable, and opulent sedan, built to personal taste.
What We Think
The 2015 Bentley Mulsanne is the flagship of the Bentley lineup, but features reasonable body control along with effortless power delivery. In a Driven Review of a 2011 Bentley Mulsanne we said, “Get going quickly, and you’re never unaware that this car is carrying a lot of momentum, but it is not a nodding, heaving luxo-barge.” While the performance was tantalizing to us, the Mulsanne’s intended audience will choose it for a different reason. We commented, “Bentley goes to great lengths to impart a special feeling with the Mulsanne, and nowhere is that more evident than in the interior. In most cars, we note the quality of the plastics; in the Mulsanne we couldn’t find any plastic. Instead, 390 pieces of leather, from fifteen hides, cover every surface in sight. Wood veneers are laid over solid wood substrates. Metal-finished bits are real metal. The idea is to convey authenticity. The feel, and even the smell, exude luxury.”
- It smells luxurious
- 811 lb-ft of torque at 1,750 rpm
- Cutting down your own tree for the wood veneer interior accents
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