GETWhipped: 2012 Bentley Continental Flying Spur

Essentially a four-door Continental GT, the Continental Flying Spur is a full-size luxury sedan powered by a twin-turbocharged W-12 engine and featuring the same familiar styling and core feature set that it brought upon its debut six years ago.

Yes, the Continental Flying Spur has been with us for six years now and it’s starting to show its age, particularly around the high, formal roofline. However, for 2012, the car has been given a modest facelift and now includes Bentley’s prestigious “Series 51” highlights.

Read more and see interior after the jumpCustomers of both the Continental Flying Spur and its more hardcore Speed variant are able to select from a range of 14 Series 51 designs, all of which are recommended by Bentley’s color and trim experts. Some of the highlights include unique paint finishes, 19-inch alloy wheels and special badging.

In the engine department there is still only one option–Bentley’s venerable twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W-12 engine rated at 552 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. It’s a smooth, powerful, and relatively forceful powerplant that should see the big sedan accelerate from 0-60 mph in under five seconds and go on to reach a top speed of 194 mph. With those numbers you’ll be putting plenty of sports cars to shame but if that’s still not enough you can always opt for the Continental Flying Spur Speed.

This particular model gets an uprated version of the 6.0-liter W-12 complete with 600 horsepower and 554 pound-feet of torque. With its extra output the Continental Flying Spur Speed will rocket to 60 mph from rest in just 4.5 seconds and reach a top speed of 200 mph. Not bad considering the whole thing weighs more than 5,400 pounds!

At the end of the day, comfort is paramount to performance when it comes to Bentleys and in this area neither the Continental Flying Spur nor its Speed variant disappoint. Front or rear, the seats are lavishly appointed, but in this case, the front is the preferred row. The controls can be a bit hard to divine at first, but once familiarized, become easy to use. The rear seats are bit tighter than you’ll find in some of the limousine-class competition, but the overall fit, finish, and craftsmanship of the cabin put even high-end rivals like the S Class in their place.

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