Make / Model Search

Future models - Bentley - Mulsanne

Sold-out Bentley Mulsanne debuts Down Under

In demand: Every example of Bentley's new flag-flyer will take six months to deliver.

Aussie demand should exceed supply despite near-$700K price for new Bentley Mulsanne

5 May 2010

BENTLEY’S new top-shelf Mulsanne sedan – and its official driveaway price of $695,000 – was revealed in Australia for the first time today, but a queue of 15 potential Aussie buyers has already formed for the eight to ten cars expected to arrive here in the next 12 months.

The bespoke British brand whipped the covers off a pre-production Mulsanne, flown in from its Hong Kong debut, this morning in Sydney - just as the Volkswagen-owned luxury car-maker’s new flagship undergoes its first press tests in the UK.

Its expected sub-$700,000 Australian pricetag is significantly up on that of its predecessor, the Arnage, as well as the Mulsanne’s most direct rival, Rolls-Royce’s upcoming Ghost, on-road pricing for which was originally also announced at $695,000 before being trimmed to $645,000 in January.

The Mulsanne will also cost almost twice as much as Bentley's entry-level four-door, the Flying Spur sedam, which opens the Continental range at $368,134.

54 center imageThe list of Mulsanne options – or their prices - have not been announced but is expected to be extensive and expensive, with each vehicle said to take 450 hours to build - including more than 170 hours on the interior alone – resulting in a six-month wait from order to Australian delivery.

“If anything, it is a more labour-intensive process to produce the Mulsanne than it was the Arnage,” said regional manager for Australasia and Southeast Asia, Ed Striebig, after unveiling the car in Sydney today.

“Everything that looks like metal on the car is metal, where safety permits,” he said of the Mulsanne, for which Bentley has concentrated on the quality of trims such as softer leather and thicker wood veneer as well as the careful assembly of each car.

The hides of no fewer than 17 cows go into each Mulsanne and the example on display today wore optional carbon-ceramic disc brakes and 21-inch (instead of 20-inch) wheels.

Co-incidentally - or otherwise - while Bentley yesterday released the first official driving footage of the Mulsanne in the UK, Rolls-Royce today announced the availability of the first iPhone and iPod Touch application for the Ghost, which allows prospective customers and enthusiasts to configure 'their' own model.

The 2585kg Mulsanne, measuring 5575mm long and 1926mm wide, is the first stand-alone large Bentley sedan since the company was absorbed by Rolls-Royce in 1931.

Its twin-turbocharged 6.75-litre pushrod V8, which develops 377kW at 4200rpm and 1020Nm of torque at 1750rpm, is said to return 15 per cent lower fuel consumption and CO2 emissions than the Arnage by employing new technologies such as cylinder deactivation, which allows it to run on four cylinders in light-load conditions.

Still, although the Mulsanne will be sportscar-quick with 100km/h arriving in a claimed 5.1 seconds from rest, the Ghost is quicker at 4.9 seconds while also being more efficient. Its BMW-developed twin-turbo 6.6-litre V12 returns a claimed 13.6L/100km – versus 16.9L/100km for the Bentley.

Like the Ghost, the Mulsanne is equipped with an eight-speed ZF transmission with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters to drive its rear wheels, plus all-independent adjustable air suspension and a monocoque chassis that Bentley says is unique.

The Road to Recovery podcast series

Read more

Click to share

Click below to follow us on
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram

Bentley models

Catch up on all of the latest industry news with this week's edition of GoAutoNews
Click here