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So long, limo to the stars: Bentley retires its Mulsanne flagship after 40 years’ service

Bentley is calling time on its Mulsanne flagship after 40 years’ faithful service to billionaires, sheiks, pop stars and other wealthy individuals.

The Mulsanne will go out with a bang, however, in the shape of a limited-run special edition model called the 6.75 Edition.

It’s the end of an era for Bentley with the Mulsanne one of - if not the - world’s most expensive and luxurious sedan/limos.

Not just will the lumbering giant – which got even bigger when Bentley launched the Mulsanne Grand Limousine version in 2016 – be retired but it’s the end of the era for its famous, 60-year-old engine.

First appearing in 1980, the Mulsanne was designed, engineered and hand-built in Bentley’s factory in Crewe.

Its 6.75-litre engine is now the world’s longest-serving V8 of its type in continuous production.

The incredible powerplant was first used in the 1959 Bentley S2 and although it has been re-designed many times over the decades, the manufacturer says the basic principles and dimensions that have defined the engine for six decades remain the same.

The news isn’t too much of a blow for affected staff; Bentley says they will be redeployed to other areas, including working on the Flying Spur range, which becomes the new flagship model.

Bentley’s Chris Craft said: “The Mulsanne has played a pivotal role in maintaining Bentley’s position as global leader of the luxury limousine segment.

“The flagship of our model range, its longevity is a testament to our ongoing commitment to hand-building the finest motor cars in the world.

“The new Mulsanne 6.75 Edition is the culmination of that achievement.”

The 6.75 Edition final models will be built by Mulliner, Bentley’s coach wing.

It will be restricted to just 30 unique examples. The car is inspired by – and takes its name from – Bentley’s legendary 6.75-litre engine, which this year celebrates its 60th year in continuous production.

The final model is based on the existing 530 bhp, 1100 Nm Mulsanne Speed – the “most driver-focused ultra-luxury sedan ever created”, according to the manufacturer.

It’s been given a range of exclusive enhancements to distinguish it from standard Speeds. These include:

  • 6.75 Edition motifs around the cabin, engine and exterior
  • interior ‘organ stop’ ventilation controls replaced by designs capped by miniature versions of the engine oil cap
  • the faces of the clock and minor gauges will feature schematic cutaway drawings of the engine itself
  • dark tint treatments to the Flying B bonnet mascot, Mulliner Serenity radiator grille and exhaust finishers
  • the engine intake manifold finished in black in lieu of the traditional silver
  • special colours, veneers and a commemorative console plaque
  • the Engine Number Plaque – traditionally signed by the craftsman that built the engine – will be signed by Bentley boss Adrian Hallmark.

The Mulsanne has been around in a range of models and generations, including the Mulsanne Grand Limousine by Mulliner.

The Grand Limousine is a unique stretch limo fitted with a fully engineered powertrain, transmission and a re-engineered chassis and suspension, aimed at guaranteeing “the highest possible degree of passenger comfort and safety in the longest ultra-luxury sedan in the world”.

Belfast Telegraph