Bentley Arnage R

From Bentley press: Bentley Motors today announced details of wide-ranging changes to its outstanding range of Arnage luxury saloons. The continued investment in the Arnage range is aimed at reinforcing its credentials, both as the only true driver's car in this High Luxury Sector, and as a range that has increased comfort, deeper luxury, classic design language, and the greatest scope for personalisation.

More than ever, the Bentley Arnage now stands as the symbol of British coachbuilding and handcraftsmanship. With an unrivalled heritage, a skill-set handed down through three generations working on the same site, and an ability to tailor cars to precise customer wishes unapproached by any other marque, the Arnage retains an unique appeal.

Every Arnage is built to order and over half are further modified by our coachbuilding arm, Bentley Mulliner. The Arnage is the culmination of over 80 years continual experience of building Grand Touring Limousines: no other production car in the world can be built more closely to the customer's precise specification. It is perhaps no surprise then to hear the comment of one regular customer that determining the specification of an Arnage is like having your own, private car company. Another told us he considered his Arnages to have been born, not made. Considering the care that goes into each one, it's an understandable point of view.

The Arnage R and RL continue in their roles as the personification of refined, four door luxury. Powered by a 400bhp (298kW) version of the twin turbo V8 boasting 616lb ft (835Nm) of torque, they represent the ultimate expression of the iron fist in the velvet glove. Effortlessly, they will pass 60mph in 6 seconds flat and continue to accelerate until the engine management gently reins them back at 155mph.

But while all Bentleys are true drivers' cars, the Arnage R and RL are intended for those who for whom sublime ride comfort and subdued noise levels mean even more than outright performance and handling response. It is these characteristics that the changes in chassis specification for the 2005 model year Arnage have been designed to enhance.

Specifically, in the Arnage R and RL, rolling comfort is considerably improved, bringing extra comfort on motorway and A-roads through a reduction in interference from small surface imperfections. In addition, because the rear axle is now allowed to move rearward in a controlled fashion when it hits a ridge in the road, its energy is much better absorbed with a consequent decrease in cabin disturbance. Overall the car feels more compliant yet also more controlled, offering a significant improvement in ride quality with no detriment to handling ability.

Taking the Arnage R first, the policy has been to simplify the options packages, with many previously optional items becoming either standard or, available at no cost. So while the list price of the Arnage R has risen, over £2000worth of previously cost options are now included as standard. To this can be added a long list of additional features for no further charge, encouraging our customers to commission their Arnage to their own precise and exacting requirements through the offer of an unrivalled level of personal choice.

The sumptuous Arnage RL, with its 250mm wheelbase extension, was already fitted with a number of featuresnow offered as standard or no-cost options on the Arnage R, but the approach remains the same. That spacious rear cabin allows the customer, with the help of Bentley Mulliner's commissioning experts to tailor the car to suit their lifestyle, whether the requirement is for a mobile office, or for games consoles to entertain the children.

Finally, the Arnage R and RL benefit from some small but significant styling changes over and above those common to all 2005MY Arnages. These modifications have been designed to further augment the luxurious status of the R and RL and to make them stand apart from the considerably more sporting outlook of the Arnage T.

Most obvious is the new suite of wheels that has been commissioned for the cars. The Arnage R and RL both now have an elegant six spoke, 18in alloy wheel as standard and a striking 12 spoke, 19in wheel as an option. These wheels replace those that have served the Arnage since its original launch and breathe fresh life into the exterior appearance of both cars.

On the inside, the seats can now be trimmed with contrast piping around their edges and also around the headrest, a small touch for sure, but one that adds an extra dash of class, distinction and atmosphere to a cabin that already boasted perhaps the most envied ambience of any luxury car interior in the world.

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