PERFORMANCE AND PRESENCE
Motor Trend|February 2020
BENTLEY DEVELOPS THE DEFINITIVE MODERN LUXURY SEDAN
ANGUS MACKENZIE

The previous two generations of the Bentley Flying Spur had Volkswagen DNA under their luxurious skins, their platforms shared with VW’s highly underrated Phaeton sedan. The 2020 Bentley Flying Spur shares its platform with a Porsche. And it’s a better car for it. In fact, the 2020 Flying Spur—effortlessly fast, opulently detailed, and brimful of raffish charm—is the best Bentley sedan of the modern era.

Powered by Bentley’s mighty W-12 engine, the 2020 Flying Spur is built on an extended version of the VW Group’s MSB platform, which underpins various Porsche Panamera models as well as Bentley’s Continental GT coupe and convertible twins.

More important, the front-engine/ rear-drive architecture allowed Stefan Sielaff’s design team to finally give the 21st century Flying Spur the frontwheels-forward stance of a classic British luxury car. As such, the new Flying Spur’s front axle centerline is 5.1 inches farther forward, allowing a long hood without a pronounced front overhang.

It’s the singular dimensional change for this generation that, visually, changes everything. And it also changes the way the Flying Spur drives.

With their engines mounted ahead of the front axle, Flying Spurs of the previous generation were nose-heavy beasts that worked their front tires hard when asked to change direction in a hurry. Not so with the new MSB platform—especially with its rear-wheel steering, active anti-roll system, and torque vectoring by brake, which makes the new Flying Spur feel more agile, more alert, and remarkably composed in the twisties.

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