Best Auto Cars: Bentley Azure


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Bentley Azure

With an overall length of 5.41 metres or 213 inches, the new Bentley Azure is the largest convertible in the world and with its design, it more resembles a yacht than a convertible. Bentley Motors chairman, Dr Franz-Josef Paefgen explains: "We enjoy an excellent dialogue with our customers and the new Azure epitomizes how responsive Bentley is to satisfying their aspirations. Bentley develops and produces cars that people desire and that are faithful to our heritage. The new Azure is the perfect example of this philosophy." The luxurious four-seater Azure, which went on sale in Spring 2006, is the latest in a portfolio of wonderfully desirable 'dropheads' stretching back many decades and reaffirms Bentley's reputation as creator of the world's most elegant convertibles.

The design of the new Azure is, first and foremost, unmistakably Bentley. It shares its face with the current Arnage range and its platform ensures it seats four adults in supreme comfort. But it is also unmistakably unique. The entire cabin and rear section of the car are newly designed, with a lavish bespoke interior; the objective being to create an opulent and inviting seating area that reflects its status as a car that is at home in Palm Springs or the Riviera. The complex folding roof on the convertible is operated hydraulically at the touch of a switch: the impressive, three-layer fabric assembly being elegantly stowed beneath the hide-trimmed tonneau in under 30 seconds. 

The twin-turbocharged V8 engine, double-wishbone suspension and extremely rigid body structure of the Arnage provide a state-of-the-art basis for the new Azure. It is powered by a 450bhp (336Kw) version of the Arnage’s 6.75-litre twin-turbocharged intercooled V8 engine and produces 875Nm (645lb ft) of torque. The specification of the production version of the Azure is virtually unchanged from the original L.A. show car. The principle change is the introduction of high technology, lightweight, carbon fibre, under-floor cross braces that contribute to the exceptional levels of body stiffness, benefiting refinement, ride and handling. In addition, the chrome trimmed bumpers and sills of the show car are now painted in body colour with a delicate chrome trim that runs the length of the car, enhancing the flowing lines of the Azure body.

Engine: 6.76L V8
Horsepower: 450  bhp / PS 
Top Speed: 168 mph (270 km/h)
Peak torque: 875  Nm (645 lb-ft) 
Acceleration:  0-60 mph in 5.9 sec  (0-100 km/h in 6.3 sec) 

Retail Price: starting at 250,000 pounds (350,000 euros or 330,000 dollars MRSP)

Competing Models: "Competing Segment" on right side of "Best Autos & Cars in the World" page

More information on: www.bentleymotors.com

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