Bentley Bentayga review, test drive
Published on Apr 06, 2016 04:50:00 PM
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It’s even pretty capable off-road. Precious few owners may end up taking their Bentley out in the wild, but it still felt quite at home rock climbing and sand surfing. Of course, we drove it on a purpose-built course, meant to show exactly what the Bentayga could do and no more, still having walked the course and having experienced some of the drops and climbs, I have a healthy respect for the Bentley, even off-road. Sure, it’s nowhere near as capable as a Range Rover, but for general mud plugging, sandy trails and our kuccha roads, the Bentayga clearly is accomplished enough.
What owners can enjoy on a daily basis is the Bentayga’s ability to cruise effortlessly in near silence. This is down, in large part, to the creamy smooth engine and the great cabin insulation. I also love the super fluid steering that feels light and freshly oiled at low speeds. Then there’s the massive oomph of the engine, that tosses you forward even if you so much as caress the throttle.
Leather used comes from bulls that live in cooler climes as there are fewer marks from insect bites. But flimsy black plastic buttons jar with wood and leather symphony.
What truly makes the Bentayga a super luxury SUV is the cabin. Famous for its exceptional build and old-world skills, Bentley acquired many of the best craftsmen around when it split from Rolls back in 1998. And that shows. As expected, sumptuous saddle leather lines almost every crevice in the cabin, the build of the wooden bits is millimetre perfect and the quality and finish of the chrome, splashed liberally over the cabin, is so good each bit looks like a mini work of art, good enough to mount on your mantelpiece. I kid you not; I stared at the chromed door handle over and over, and the gear selector with the chrome finish just gives the cabin a massive lift. And is there any doubt Bentley makes some of the finest seats! They look fabulous to begin with, the quilted bits, extra bolstering and the hints of chrome adding yet another dash of luxury. And on the Bentayga, they are so large and supportive, you sink right in. They feel smooth to touch, have that combination of suppleness and firmness only seen on the finest luxury leather goods and unlike some others, the seats feel robust enough to last forever. Bentley has cleverly used the same super comfy seats at the rear of this four-seater and you get 20-way adjustment and massage function on all seats. There are a few areas though where Bentley should have done a better job. There should have been a bit more legroom in the rear of the cabin, functionality on the central touchscreen is poor and why oh why does Bentley still have to use these lightly built black plastic buttons?
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