What's New for 2007
Updates are minor for the 2007 Bentley Continental Flying Spur. Technology upgrades include a DVD-based navigation system (versus CD-based), Bluetooth phone connectivity and an optional rear-seat telephone. Customers will now be offered an almost endless choice of colors with Bentley's new exterior paint-matching service, while the number of interior veneers has been increased to seven. The new Mulliner Driving Specification package gives the Flying Spur a more sporting character, with 20-inch wheels and special diamond-quilted leather.
Picking among ultra-luxury sedans like the 2007 Bentley Continental Flying Spur is akin to trying to decide which Rat Pack member to spend a night out on the town with. With each possessing so much style, class and downright coolness, picking your favorite basically boils down to personal preference.
Consider the Flying Spur the Sammy Davis Jr. of this elite segment that also consists of the Rolls-Royce Phantom, Maybach 57, Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG, and eventually the Aston Martin Rapide. Like Sammy, the Bentley has style and class, but it can also dance, with all-wheel drive and an adjustable air suspension that make it feel much more agile than its 5,456-pound curb weight would suggest. Essentially the four-door version of Bentley's Continental GT coupe, this big sedan exhibits impressive handling and poise that set it apart from its ultra-luxury competition.
In terms of pure luxury, ride quality and presence, the Flying Spur does lose some style points to the Rolls-Royce and Maybach, but with a price tag that's more than $100,000 cheaper, there's bound to be some trade-off. Nevertheless, only the world's most spoiled individuals will complain about the Continental's elegant interior crafted of the finest materials. The overall look certainly gives the impression of a German take on classic British design (Bentley is owned by Volkswagen), with a logical control layout and meticulous fit and finish. There's also enough Northern European hides and veneered lumber to make you feel like you're sitting in Prince Charles' private den — or make vegan environmentalists picket the Flying Spur's parking spot.
It'll be able to escape them pretty quickly, though, as the twin-turbo W12 engine's 552 horses can haul the Spur's hefty mass up to a top speed of 195 mph. Huge brakes that are almost 16 inches in diameter resist fade and bring the big Bentley back to zero with impressive composure.
For those in the market for an ultra-luxury sedan (lucky you), the 2007 Bentley Continental Flying Spur provides the requisite levels of high-end luxury while adding a surprising amount of on-road competence and fun. If that's an important quality, then perhaps choosing among this Rat Pack class of vehicles just got easier.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
The 2007 Bentley Continental Flying Spur is a high-performance ultra-luxury sedan. Only one trim level is available. In this upper echelon of luxury vehicles, standard equipment is plentiful with 19-inch wheels; an adjustable air suspension; twin bi-xenon headlamps; 16-way power front seats with heating, cooling and memory; four-zone automatic climate control; DVD navigation; Bluetooth phone connectivity, and believe it or not, 11 cows worth of leather. Options include front-seat lumbar massage, flip-down veneer picnic tables for the rear seat and a full-length center console that reduces seating capacity to four. The Mulliner Driving Specification package includes special 20-inch wheels, alloy foot pedals, diamond-quilted leather and a choice of dark-stained Burr Walnut or Piano Black veneers. There is also a wide range of customization choices that include 17 leather colors, seven veneers and an almost endless selection of exterior paints.
Powertrains and Performance
This hefty Bentley sedan is spurred along by a twin-turbocharged version of the Volkswagen Group's W12 engine. It produces 552 hp and 479 pound-feet of torque starting at a low 1,600 rpm. Mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive, this high-tech power plant hustles the 5,456-pound Flying Spur from zero to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds. There are steering-wheel paddle shifters if you're up to changing gears yourself. However, they're not easy to reach, not quick to shift and don't match engine speed when you downshift.
The 2007 Bentley Continental Flying Spur not only keeps its occupants pampered, but safe as well. There are side and head curtain airbags for front and rear outboard passengers. A passenger-sensing system in the rear seats automatically raises the rear headrests to ensure the best possible protection against whiplash injuries. ABS, traction control and stability control are also standard equipment.
Interior Design and Special Features
Roughly half a forest of trees and a small herd of cattle seemingly sacrificed themselves for the Flying Spur's exquisitely crafted interior. Blending decades of Bentley's classic design with the absolute best of Volkswagen Group's materials and build quality yields an environment literally fit for a queen. (After all, Elizabeth II's official limousine is a modified Bentley Arnage.) Though the Flying Spur is loaded with plenty of up-to-date technology, its controls are nevertheless straightforward, with a relatively small number of well-organized buttons. The 16-way-adjustable front seats (more like thrones) are nearly perfect, but the rear seats lack the adjustment and features (such as cooling) available in competing sedans.
With its adjustable air suspension, the 2007 Bentley Continental Flying Spur can waft along the freeway cosseting its occupants in quiet comfort or zip through corners like a sport sedan that's 1,000 pounds lighter. In fact, in our testing it bettered the slalom speeds of the BMW 7 Series and matched the Bentley Continental GT coupe. Although hardly indicative of a sports car, the steering is dead stable at speed and light when you need it to be around town — just what most ultra-luxury sedan buyers are looking for.