The Bentley Mulsanne has morphed into a sports saloon that the company is billing as “the fastest ultra-luxury driving experience in the world.
The Mulsanne Speed, which was unveiled at the Paris motor show, features a more potent 6.75-litre V8 engine, bespoke styling inside and out and chassis changes aimed at providing a more focused drive. It will reach the UK later this year, priced from £252,200.
Powering the Mulsanne Speed is a re-engineered version of the firm’s twin-turbo V8 engine. The combustion system has been redesigned, while new variable valve timing and turbocharger controls help swell the power output to 530bhp and torque to 811lb ft at 1750rpm, up from 505bhp and 752lb ft in the standard Mulsanne.
This Euro 6-compliant engine helps shift the Mulsanne Speed from 0-60mph in just 4.9sec and on to a top speed of 190mph, improvements of 0.2sec and 6mph over the base model.
Cylinder deactivation features on the engine, allowing it to run as a V4 on light loads. CO2 emissions are 342g/km, down from 393g/km in the standard Mulsanne.
The eight-speed automatic gearbox has been recalibrated to improve torque delivery and the connection between car and driver. It also includes a new ‘S’ mode, which keeps the engine speed above 2000rpm to allow quicker turbo response.
A new Sport driving mode is offered in addition to the exisiting Bentley and Comfort modes. This new setting stiffens the air suspension and adjusts the steering “for greater feedback and accuracy”, according to the Crewe-based manufacturer.
Visually, the Mulsanne Speed is differentiated from the standard Mulsanne on which it is based by a new dark tint to the stainless steel front grille, front mesh, front headlights and rear lights.
It is equipped with 21-inch alloy wheels, which are ‘handed’, so there are bespoke designs for the alloys on both sides of the car. Twin exhaust pipes also feature and four new bodywork colours are offered.
New trims, colours and veneers are available for the interior, which as standard has the Mulliner Driving Specification option on the base Mulsanne. This includes diamond quilting for the seats and door panels, special pedals and a new headlining. Order books for the model open at the Paris show.
The Mulsanne Speed joins a revised version of the standard Mulsanne in Bentley’s flagship range. The 6.75-litre V8 retains its 505bhp and 752lb ft outputs, but fuel economy has improved by 13 per cent. The eight-speed automatic gearbox has also been recalibrated for smoother shifts.