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1991 Bentley Continental R

1991 Bentley Continental R

1991 Bentley Continental R

The Bentleys of the past are far removed, technologically, from their successors. But from the marque’s earliest days, Bentleys had that rare capacity to go the distance. On the rough, dusty roads of their time, they had the reserves of power both to outpace and to outlast their rivals.

Today’s Continental R, with its beautifully-appointed interior, its supremely capable 553 lb. ft., 385 bhp V8 engine and its sophisticated computer-aided reaction to the driver’s inputs, has the quality of long-striding power that distinguished its predecessors. From the outside, the laser-cut stainless steel matrix grille hints at the marque’s lineage, giving the motor car’s lines a purposeful edge. Inside, sports seats, unique to the Continental R, provide the support and comfort for spirited long-distance driving while the sculpted dual-tone leather steering wheel is another of the cockpit’s many tactile pleasures.

The Continental R is a true Grand Tourer, capable of maintaining high average speeds while cocooning four occupants and their luggage in quiet comfort for hundreds of miles at a time. It is a car that rewards and exhilarates the driver without unnecessary physical effort: responsive and finely controlled in traffic, unmatched and magnificent on the open road. A thoroughbred deserving of its green Bentley badge, and a grand tourer to go the distance.

A magnificent blend of elegance and muscularity in the lines on the Continental R, set off by the laser-cut matrix grille and cut-through bumpers.

The dual-colour steering wheel now features a larger diameter rim and sculpted hand grips for improved ergonomics. The new Continental R sports seats with integral seat belts offer improved lateral support and are twin stitched in a curved flute style. The burr walnut veneer pictured here is just one of the many fine wood veneers that may be specified.

The motor car shown is simply one example of the many specifications available from the wide choice of colour combinations and finishes offered by Bentley Motors. The scope is extended even further through the engineers and craftsmen of Mulliner, who are able to undertake special commissions to design and specify a motor car for an individual’s driving characteristics and tastes.

In Detail

type Series Production Car
production years 1991 – 2002
released at 1991 Geneva Motor Show
built at England
body stylist John Heffernan, Ken Greenley
production 1290
price $ $ 279,900
engine Rolls-Royce V8
position Front Longitudinal
aspiration Garrett Turbocharger
valvetrain 2 Valves / Cyl
displacement 6750 cc / 411.9 in³
bore 104.1 mm / 4.09 in
stroke 99.1 mm / 3.9 in
compression 8.0:1
power 287.1 kw / 385.0 bhp @ 4000 rpm
specific output 57.04 bhp per litre
bhp/weight 160.28 bhp per tonne
torque 750.0 nm / 553.2 ft lbs @ 2000 rpm
body / frame Unitary Steel Monocoque
driven wheels RWD
front tires F 255/55R-17
rear tires R 255/55R-17
front brakes Vented Discs w/ ABS
rear brakes Vented Discs w/ ABS
front wheels F 43.2 x 19.1 cm / 17.0 x 7.5 in
rear wheels R 43.2 x 19.1 cm / 17.0 x 7.5 in
curb weight 2402 kg / 5296 lbs
wheelbase 3016 mm / 118.7 in
front track 1549 mm / 60.9 in
rear track 1549 mm / 60.9 in
length 5342 mm / 210.3 in
width 2058 mm / 81.0 in
height 1462 mm / 57.6 in
transmission GM 4L80-E 4-Speed Auto
top speed ~241.4 kph / 150.0 mph
0 – 60 mph ~3.0 seconds
0 – 100 mph ~16.9 seconds
0 – 100 kph ~6.3 seconds
drag 0.465 Cd
urban fuel econ eu 25.7 L/100 km or 9.15 mpg-us
extra urban fuel econ eu 13.0 L/100 km or 18.09 mpg-us
combined fuel econ eu 17.7 L/100 km or 13.29 mpg-us
fuel capacity 108 litres or 28.51 gal.



Auction Sales History


1995 Bentley Continental R – sold for $40,000 325 HP 6.75L Garret turbocharged engine. 4-speed GM 4L80E automatic transmission. Ventilated disc front brakes, solid rear discs. Believed to be less than 57k original miles. Gorgeous Cream paintwork. Parchment and Tan interior hides.
Auction Source: 2012 Daytime Auction by Mecum


1991 Bentley Continental R Coupé Chassis – sold for €30,600

A pre-production example (no. 5), this left-hand drive Continental R was built to US specification and featured in the Geneva Motor Show brochures for the model at its launch in 1992 (brochure copies available). Circa 2000, the car was exported to Australia where the immediately preceding owner purchased it approximately seven years ago. Work carried out during his ownership included overhauling the steering and air conditioning (with a new compressor), fitting new brake pads and re-coring the radiator. While in his possession the Bentley was used for various rallies, touring Europe extensively in 2008 and visiting motoring events including the St Moritz British Classic Car Meet in July when it won a concours trophy.

A new front bumper had just been fitted (following a collision with a hare in Ireland) when the car was purchased by the current owner at Bonhams’ Sale at Kelmarsh Hall in June 2009 (Lot 234) by which time it had covered around 130,000 miles from new. Now UK registered and with duties paid, this historic pre-production Bentley prototype is described by the vendor as in generally good/excellent condition and offered with current MoT and Swansea V5C document.

Auction Source: 2011 Goodwood Revival Sale by Bonhams