The real new Arnage

Posted by Paul Horrell at 7:57 am on Sunday October 5, 2008

Sorry Bentley, but my first reaction (everyone’s surely?) to a car named Arnage Final Series is to ignore it and ask what’s next. So I did some digging to find out about the Arnage’s replacement.

The current Arnage faces a slow twitching death. The Final Series doesn’t even go on sale until spring 09, and after that you will still be able to buy the LWB models.

In fact I really can’t see why Bentley pre-launched the Arnage Final Series at the Paris Show. It just screams ‘run-out special’.

Anyway, let’s talk about the future. The new top-end saloon goes on sale in 2010.

This time last year, Audi engineers started telling me they were going to impose their A8’s aluminium spaceframe and chassis on the new Bentley. Turns out Crewe won its independence over that.

This will have a big effect on the car’s character and bearing. If it had used a VW Group platform it would have been a lower-slung car like the Continental. The Arnage successor won’t be like that. It’ll be tall as the current one. And as large. And as heavyweight. So it will still have that ocean-liner magnificence.

The 6.75-litre twin-turbo engine stays too. It might be based on an engine introduced in 1959, but rumours of its death have been greatly exaggerated. Again, it’s integral to the big-Bentley character, and it’s possible to make it run clean enough for years to come.

Bentley has already announced a programme to allow it to run on biofuel. Further into the future, hybridisation is on the cards. Though that probably doesn’t matter to those Bentley customers who happen to own their own oilfields.

The car isn’t just a facelift though. It needs some big-scale underskin work to help it meet new crash rules (front and rear) and make the body stiffer.

It’ll be even more expensive than the Arnage too. Most Arnages in any case already cost tens of thousands over list, because customers spam them up with assorted personalistion from the in-house Mulliner coachworks.

The plan for the new car is simply to start the price bidding at roughly the point where it currently stops. So you’re looking at a £300,000 car.

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  1. jennings said...
    Tuesday October 7, 2008 at 11:56 am Link to comment Report comment

    this is my favourite bentley

  2. Rob Glynn said...
    Tuesday October 7, 2008 at 2:22 pm Link to comment Report comment

    The Arnage is my favourite Bentley too; the chances of Volkswagen maintaining the current car’s character and sense of occassion is probably minimal – very sad.

  3. APH1101 said...
    Tuesday October 7, 2008 at 4:59 pm Link to comment Report comment

    “but rumours of its death have been greatly exaggerated”

    Now, is it just me or have you lot nicked that quote from Steve Job’s latest keynote???

    “Rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated”

    Hmmmm….

  4. Airbag said...
    Tuesday October 7, 2008 at 5:01 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Long live the 6 3/4 V8!

  5. Mikeado said...
    Tuesday October 7, 2008 at 5:17 pm Link to comment Report comment

    As long as it looks and feels both English and Bentley-ish (surely the same thing), then I’m sure Bentley faithful and UAE residents alike will like the ‘next Arnage’

  6. Mikeado said...
    Tuesday October 7, 2008 at 5:20 pm Link to comment Report comment

    (off topic)

    That drawing at the bottom of this page is of a Porsche 914 isn’t it?

    Couldn’t help noticing.

  7. Paul S said...
    Tuesday October 7, 2008 at 11:21 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Will be a sad day if (when?) the ‘real’ Bentleys are no longer available. I won’t ever be able to afford one, but it’s just fantastic that cars like the Arnage are still being built.

  8. tyres said...
    Wednesday October 8, 2008 at 7:45 am Link to comment Report comment

    the Arnage is HEAVY,UGLY and CRAP.

  9. mrHaughey said...
    Wednesday October 8, 2008 at 11:36 am Link to comment Report comment

    Bentley is wack. They look shit like a luxury black cab and do nothing good for our world. The Arnage, Aure and Brooklands have to go.

  10. Anonymous said...
    Wednesday October 8, 2008 at 6:42 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Save it for a forum that isn’t British and doesn’t love the last true Bentley. Back on topic, this will be a huge shame if they don’t get independence on the design. I will miss the Arnage.

  11. Ed said...
    Tuesday October 14, 2008 at 12:23 pm Link to comment Report comment

    if someone describes a car as “wack” then it must be good.

  12. Spanishman said...
    Friday October 17, 2008 at 9:37 pm Link to comment Report comment

    If the future Bentley doens’t look like a Maybach it’s ok… Because the germans idea for a super saloon is longer, wider, wooder and big-truck engine. In sum-up, they have no idea.

  13. Willo said...
    Saturday October 18, 2008 at 1:29 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I’ve driven the current Arnage and although it’s a traddional Bentley it isn’t a great car. yes it makes a lovely noise and looks stunning but it is very very dated. and an update is well overdue. The Flying Spur is a great car if the new Arnage is half as good then it will well worth waiting for.

  14. Paul Horrell said...
    Wednesday October 22, 2008 at 4:08 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Mikeado: that is a 914. I’ve never driven one. Though I did have a good old go in a 914/6, the one with the 2.0-litre flat-six, and it was a better (if far uglier) can than the 911s of its era. Well spotted anyway. No prizes though.
    Paul

  15. Paul Horrell said...
    Wednesday October 22, 2008 at 4:11 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Willo: yes the Spur is a good car, but in my view it’s a bit too like other cars. It’s too low for a real Bentley. The Arnage is dated as you say, but because it’s so tall and carriage-like, it does have a unique feel, a real Bentley feel. That’s what they are trying to preserve in the new flagship.

  16. bentleys said...
    Thursday October 23, 2008 at 7:15 pm Link to comment Report comment

    the bentley is an old mans car .thats why my dad drives a conti gtc .bentleys over the past few years have got a lot of publicly what for ?.They [bentley] stick rather strange names on there cars thats why you will see a bentley saying final series thank god we wont see any more of this ugly looking thing ever again .

  17. Bentley said...
    Friday October 24, 2008 at 9:07 pm Link to comment Report comment

    This is perfect if you are very very very rich….and slow.

  18. Simon Cowell said...
    Friday October 24, 2008 at 9:09 pm Link to comment Report comment

    This a good luxurious car.Although I would definately rather have my Maybach anyday.
    Sorry Top Gear!

  19. The Stig Wannabe said...
    Monday November 3, 2008 at 2:30 pm Link to comment Report comment

    I liked the Arnage because it was so unique that those stupid Maybachs…If you think the Arnage is too slow then you should buy the Brooklands which looks just like the Arnage and it much more powerful and faster engine…

  20. Carfan3 said...
    Tuesday November 11, 2008 at 8:13 am Link to comment Report comment

    Paul, do you agree with what I’m going to say?
    I think Bentley should make an Arnage as nice as the Continental GT and maybe as elegant as the Rolls Royce Phantom. I think Bentley is doing an exellent job with all its cars.

    Also if you think an Arnage is too slow then you should get a Brooklands because that- according to Jeremy is very, very, very quick for its looks. But still a bit pricey though.

  21. CarsRmyLife said...
    Tuesday November 11, 2008 at 4:08 pm Link to comment Report comment

    A Bio-Fuel arnage!?!? wow. I think the ‘final series’ name is slightly naff but who cares when the end result is a car that, instead of using up fuel like it doesn’t care, actually runs on something that is kind to the environment? Now I’m no eco-hippy or anything, but personally I love bentley and I love their cars-but bio-fuel? they could have easily just used diesel, but as it is due for release in 2009 I think they thought diesel was a bit prehistoric…. but I’m still glad they’re using that 6.75 litre V8 though-that is one good engine.

  22. CarsRmyLife said...
    Tuesday November 11, 2008 at 4:10 pm Link to comment Report comment

    this might have no relevance, but does anyone think that people are going to commemmorate the Arnage’s death or let it go amiss?

  23. Carfan3 said...
    Friday November 14, 2008 at 7:42 am Link to comment Report comment

    ha ha ha:P

  24. Carfan3 said...
    Friday November 14, 2008 at 7:43 am Link to comment Report comment

    :) i mean

  25. Carfan3 said...
    Monday November 17, 2008 at 7:50 am Link to comment Report comment

    Also Paul, I hear you love F1. Is that true?

  26. English Cad said...
    Monday November 17, 2008 at 9:28 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Why not shoe horn in a Veyron lump?
    It could be called the final word!

  27. Sir Bentley said...
    Wednesday December 24, 2008 at 2:46 am Link to comment Report comment

    I will be glad to see this animal put to sleep; its in dire need of an update to keep par with the rolls phantom.

    That said, I hate the lower level models, especially the gtc coupe. It looks like a female product (let your imagination go wild)! lol Awd is a great feature and I wish more luxury saloons came with it as an option, but the shoddy looks of the continental versions is too much to tollerate–ugly is an understatement!

  28. Wozzer said...
    Monday March 23, 2009 at 3:16 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Your facts about the Arnage replacement are broadly correct, Crewe learned a valuable lesson when the BMW V12 and V8 were used. They just wouldn’t sell well. Yet the Arnage was the beginning of a new era at Crewe; modern production line, water based paint etc. Yet there’s something about the Arnage that touches the very soul. Maybe it’s the equivalent of power boat racing in the QE2 i dunno. But i love it!!!

  29. Qataif said...
    Saturday June 30, 2012 at 11:04 pm Link to comment Report comment

    Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it. Glance complex to more brought agreeable from you! However, how can we communicate?

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