There are no significant changes for the 2010 Bentley Brooklands.
It's fair to say that Americans don't understand the appeal of having a queen. It's hard to see much worth in an old lady who sits in a giant house keeping her dysfunctional family in line while plastering her mug on all your money. She's not really ruling the country, so why keep her around?
The same can be said about another grand old lady: the 2010 Bentley Brooklands. This opulent luxury coupe is 10 inches longer than a Chevy Tahoe and weighs just as much, while being based on a platform introduced in the 1990s and powered by an engine with heritage dating back to the 1950s. It is to modern car design what monarchy is to modern government.
Yet what one man dismisses as "antiquated," another honors as a pleasant reminder of heritage and a different way of doing things. While Bentley has moved on to its newer Continental line with turbocharged W12 engines and all-wheel drive, the Brooklands provides a vital tie to old-world motoring and the brand's honored past. The Continental may be the better, more sensible choice for the well-heeled masses, but the 2010 Bentley Brooklands remains a ceremonial figurehead. Like England without the queen, a Bentley without an old-school car like this just wouldn't be the same.
The Bentley brand probably wouldn't be the same without the half-century-old "6.75-liter" V8 available in one of its motor cars, either. Thoroughly modernized over the years though still very old-school (its redline is a Peterbilt-like 4,600 rpm), this turbocharged V8 produces 530 horsepower and a truly ridiculous 774 pound-feet of torque. If you ever wanted to know the fastest way to disintegrate a pair of rear tires, we'd highly recommend turning the traction control off in a Bentley Brooklands.
For the Brookland's base price of $340,000, there is an almost endless number of other ultra-premium and exotic cars one could add to his or her collection instead. All of them would be more modern, though only the Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe is synonymous in terms of size and grandeur. It costs $400,000. In this price range, though, would you really care? The Queen certainly wouldn't.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
The 2010 Bentley Brooklands is a four-seat luxury coupe. It comes standard with 20-inch wheels; xenon headlights; parking sensors; power-folding and auto-dimming exterior mirrors; power-adjustable front seats with memory function, heating and massaging; power reclining rear seats with heating and massaging; power tilt steering wheel; full leather interior; a navigation system and Bluetooth. Options include a rearview camera, an iPod interface, a 10-speaker Naim sound system and innumerable customization trim options.
Powertrains and Performance
The Bentley Brooklands is powered by a 6.8-liter twin-turbo V8 good for 530 hp and 774 lb-ft of torque. Rear-wheel drive and a six-speed automatic with a manual shift mode are standard. Bentley estimates the Brooklands will go from zero to 60 mph in 5 seconds flat. Fuel economy, should you somehow care, is 9 mpg city/15 mpg highway and 11 mpg combined.
The Brooklands features front and rear side-impact airbags, antilock brakes with brake assist, traction control, stability control and parking sensors.
Interior Design and Special Features
The 2010 Bentley Brooklands' interior is classically British, with decadent amounts of hand-finished leathers, high-gloss veneers and metal-trimmed controls. As it's based on a car that dates back more than a decade, don't expect the sort of high-tech interfaces found on the latest luxury cars. Still, navigation, Bluetooth and an iPod interface are available. Comfort is of paramount importance, not surprisingly, and the backseat in particular is remarkably spacious. The Brooklands also features power-adjustable rear seats (they're also heated and massage you).
Thanks to the mountains of torque and horsepower generated by the twin-turbo V8, the mammoth 2010 Bentley Brooklands can accelerate with the authority of a muscle car. The suspension does a worthy job of isolating the cabin from road noise and pavement irregularities, while the steering provides a fair amount of feedback to the driver. If you drive the Brooklands on a twisty road at an enthusiastic pace, there will be little doubt that you're piloting a vehicle that weighs nearly 3 tons, but this big Bentley maintains enough composure to keep drama in check.