Car news

16 August 2013

Limited edition Bentley announced

Special versions of the Mulsanne built to celebrate Le Mans

Vijay Pattni
Car image

Bentley has announced a special edition of its Mulsanne to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the Le Mans 24hour race, and 10 years since it won it in a Speed 8.

It's called, unsurprisingly, the Bentley Le Mans Limited Edition Mulsanne, and there are six versions available, each one inspired by a driver from Bentley's six victories at La Sarthe.

Each one features diamond-quilted hide for the seats and door panels, drilled alloy foot pedals, sports tuned suspension and steering, quad exhaust pipes and two-piece, five-spoke, dark tinted alloy wheels. Phew.

And who are these mythical Bentley racers? First up you've got the John Duff Le Mans Mulsanne (dark grey ‘moonbeam' exterior). The original ‘Bentley Boy'; Duff set over fifty world records for speed and endurance, and was the man who convinced Mr Bentley to participate in the very first 1923 Le Mans, going on to win it the following year.

Next is the Dudley Benjafield Mulsanne (green exterior, cream/green leather interior); Dudley was a Harley Street ‘specialist' who competed in motorsports for the "thrill of the race", and competed at Le Mans seven times, winning in 1927.

Woolf Barnato also lends his name to the Mulsanne (granite exterior, red leather interior), and quite rightly too - he secured three back-to-back Le Mans wins for Bentley from 1928 through to 1930. Mr Bentley considered Woolf to be the best driver he had; Woolf later served as company chairman.

The Tim Birkin Bentley Mulsanne (white exterior) is named after the famed ex-fighter pilot who drove in a white drill helmet, goggles and a silk scarf. Very classy. He took the Le Mans victory in 1929 alongside Woolf Barnato. Don't forget, his old Blower Bentley has had an export bar placed on it, to help secure it's future in Britain.

Glen Kidston (dark sapphire exterior) was an ex-naval officer, and joined Bentley after he'd "survived close calls both in air and at sea". Hmmm, it's all a bit James Bond, isn't it? He won at Le Mans for Bentley in 1930, again with Woolf Barnato, and gets his name in the roster of Mulsannes, too.

Finally, you've got the Guy Smith Bentley Mulsanne (‘Beluga' exterior), named after the man who piloted the Speed 8 across the finish line in 2003 to claim Bentley's sixth Le Mans victory.

Tags: bentley, le mans, mulsanne



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