2016 Bentley Mulsanne powertrain and chassis
Power for the standard car comes from the same 6.75-litre V8, which is linked to an eight-speed automatic ZF transmission and which delivers an unchanged 505bhp and 752lb ft of torque. The 0-60mph time remains 5.1sec, with a top speed of 184mph. Official fuel economy is 19.3mpg, up from 16.8mpg, with CO2 emissions of 342g/km, down from 393g/km.
New chassis hardware includes active engine mounts and revised suspension bushes, which deliver a more controlled ride that drivers can adapt between Bentley, Sport, Comfort and custom modes. Meanwhile a new tyre construction that features sound wave-absorbing foam created in partnership with Dunlop reduces cabin noise by up to 4dBA - which is more than half of the noise level generated in the cabin in the current car.
2016 Bentley Mulsanne exterior styling
Although the new-look Mulsanne stays true to its predecessor, the redesign is extensive; the entire front-end forward of the A-pillar is new, including the bumper, bonnet, radiator, shell, grilles and lights. Key to these changes has been a philosophy of integrating all the design elements so that they flow and work together more neatly, as well as giving the car more visual width and therefore presence.
The new stainless steel grille with vertical slats - 80mm wider than before - is the stand-out change on the front. Aping the design of historic Bentleys, including the 1930 8 Litre, Embiricos and R-Type Continental, it has the more recently used mesh detailing of modern Bentleys cited behind it. “The vertical slats give the car a strong presence and imply luxury, while the matrix mesh implies a sportiness,” said Bentley’s Sang Yup Lee, head of exterior design.
It is framed by a pair of floating all-LED headlights, which offer adaptive technology for better night vision, and which adjust their lighting pattern according to the prevailing conditions. By pushing some design elements farther to the corners of the car, Bentley’s designers have again worked to give the car more visual width and presence.
That theme continues at the rear, where the changes are more focused on the bumper and light treatments. The bumper, for instance, is 26mm wider at its lower edge, and includes a feature line designed to catch the light and give the car a more purposeful look. The rear lights are also more stylised in a ‘B’ shape, to give the car a more instantly recognisable look at night.