A few years ago, I got a call from one of the sales guys at Bentley Toronto, asking me if I would be available to drive the Bentley Brooklands Coupe. Let’s just say, time was quickly made to accommodate this test drive. The following is my account from that drive, with some light updating. Hope you’ll enjoy reliving this test of a truly awesome automobile. Enjoy!
If you think most Bentley’s have become too common, and want something from the brand that is always going to remain a rare sight; than what you need is to find a 2008 to 2010 Bentley Brooklands Coupe.
This is very exclusive steed indeed. Named after the Bentley’s from the early 1930’s that raced on the banked Brooklands circuit, this new coupe will have a total production run of just 550 cars spread over a three-year period. The reason it will require three years to do just 550 cars is simple, it takes a lot of time to hand-build each one. For example, Dodge takes just 9-hours to build a new Challenger from start to finish; the skilled craftsmen at Bentley require 450-hours to build just one Brooklands coupe.
This manic attention to detail shows in the end result, as this is one exquisitely made car. Everywhere you look and touch, you will find craftsmanship at its very finest. So you get the finest leathers and the finest wood grain; not to forget the coolest chrome your fingers will ever caress. This has got to be one of the best made cars I have ever been in.
Actually, I got to do a little better than just get in this very rare car; I got to drive it too. When a car is this rare, you don’t expect the local dealer to have demo’s lying around, however Bentley Toronto back in 2008 had held a special event for the press and their customers, and had this factory demonstrator brought in from the U.K. (it still had G.B. registration plates on it) for two days. Thanks to a helpful contact, I was lucky enough to be allowed to drive it.
The Brooklands Coupe is one powerful beast. It’s 6.75-liter, twin-turbo charged V8, produces 530hp. With 774 lb/ft of torque also available whenever provoked, it can easily melt its Pirelli P-Zero tires, mounted on those lovely 20-inch wheels. After all, this cars six-speed automatic gearbox sends all that grunt to the rear wheels only (unlike the Bentley Continental GT which has all-wheel drive).
The Brooklands Coupe, despite weighing in at 2665kg, will sprint from 0-100km/h in just 5.1-seconds, and onto an incredible top speed of 297 km/h. So that makes this Bentley among the fastest muscle cars on Earth.
My test drive was far too short to test any high speed claims, or put it through a handling test, but what I did get to learn was how eager this car is to accelerate. Just dab the throttle and it would just explode down the straight. It is indeed a great sensation as this big brute builds up speed. It sounds good too. It’s not as loud as an Aston Martin, but has much more of a muted, refined growl. I love the fact that you still get to hear the twin-turbo chargers whistling away in this car.
When just cruising, it is quiet and cosseting, just perfect for taking it on long trips. You even get massaging seats to make every journey feel like a spa retreat. However, with an average fuel-economy of 19.5-liters/100km, don’t forget to bring your gas card.
However, if you were able to afford a car that had a starting price of $372,000 when new, I am sure you could afford to fill it up.
These days, you’ll still need to set aside roughly $200,000 to get your hands on a used one. Is it worth it? To own a beautiful blend of automotive luxury and art with a heavy dose of performance, and not to mention that its rarity will keep its depreciation down to a minimum, I certainly think it is worth every penny.
Hopefully one day I’ll be able to afford one of these myself.