I have never been a great fan of Bentley’s. It looks as if they are quite confused about what they actually want to build and what are they actually making…See for example, the Continental, it has currently on offer more than 8 variants… GT W12, GT V8, GT V8s, GT speed W12 and this is just the start. I mean what’s the point of having a car which is having a Split-Personality Disorder, it’s never really sure what it is. At times, it wants to be a racer and at times it wants to be a long distance cruiser…in pursuit of becoming the best of both worlds, it ends up all wrong. If I wanted to buy a car which is fun on a race track and comfortable on a long cruise, I’ll buy a car which at first place is born to do all this…I’ll buy an Aston Martin DB9.
And we see this same mistake being repeated again by Bentley, as it has now come up with the Bentley Bentayga. It is quite an odd name…It’s Spanish, what else can you expect… Bentley wants to become the king of a market which never really existed.Surely, we do have high end luxury SUV’s like the Range Rover and a person with his sensible head on will also opt for one because it’s perfect the end.
The Bentayga with a starting price of Rs.3.8 Crores is not what you would call CHEAP. It is quite expensive and that too for no reason.The person who will buy one must be having quite a lot of other cars as well and no one will ever think that “Right, I have spent so much on this, now I won’t take the G-Wagen or the Range Rover which must be the obvious choice but the Bentayga” It’ll be idiotic. The G-Wagen starts at around Rs.1.93 Crores and to be honest, it sure is a much better off-road vehicle.
Now,the question arises that “Why should a person buy the Bentayga?”, and the answer is he shouldn’t because for twice the money what you are actually getting is an Audi Q7 which has been taking steroids.It is of no use. The Bentayga uses the same platform as the Q7, the same 6.0-litre W-12 that the A8 uses and the same off-road system as well.It’s engine pumps out 600BHP and around 664 lb-ft of torque enough to rip off the road as you set off from the red light.This also means that this kind of firepower can propel this thing to a hundred in four seconds flat,which is astonishing for a car which weighs more than most mountains.There is also some kind of electronic witchcraft which helps this thing off-road, like the oiling system is designed to keep the engine lubricated at up to 35 degrees of tilt in any direction,which i must say is quite remarkable…The engine now has faster spooling turbos that are now actually integrated in the exhaust manifolds.At the engineering front this thing is absolutely sublime.Bentley also offers you all kinds of customisation options from 15 colours of hide to 14 different seatbelt colours.Is the colour of the seatbelt that important that you have to have 14 different options?! Like really?
All in all, what Bentley has done is that it kick-started a segment which never really existed and which has sent many high-end luxury carmakers back to the drawing board, because in the coming years this segment will witness increasing competition from Lamborghini and Maserati as well… and it would be one hell of a battle.
And what about the Bentayga? Well, buy a Range Rover.
-BY PRANAV MEHTA