Existing for over a hundred years, Bentley is one of the most luxurious automobile companies. A significant brand within the automobile industry, Bentley has more than it gives away. Beside the superior interior and roaring engine, Bentley has a few hidden secrets waiting to be discovered.
The Famous Bentley Boys
The Bentley Boys were a group of wealthy Bentley enthusiasts who helped Bentley become a marque in motorsports. In 2019, Lewis Hamilton was ranked by Forbes at the world’s 13th highest paid sports star, however, the Bentley Boys, which featured Capt. Woolf Barnato, J.D Benjafield, Tim Birkin, S.C.H Davis, Glen Kidston, John Duff, and Jack and Clive Dunfee, were unpaid. These men had a true passion for racing, moreover, racing Bentleys. Their relationship with the brand, which led to five Le Mans victories in eight years, was apparent. It was often the young men exhilarating attitude which helped both them, and Bentley, gain an outstanding reputation.
Driving then Drinking
Following their first Le Mans win, the Bentley Boys arrived back in London after dominating the contest and being the only British team to compete. The boys were, of course, in a mood to celebrate. Alongside being the only British team surrounded by French and Germans, this was only the second endurance event these men had competed in. So, when they landed back in Mayfair, trophy in tow, they were irritated by the fact the bar had been left, well, dry — with the exception of Calvados and Dubonnet.
The Bentley Cocktail
- 1 and a half ounces of Calvados or Apple Brandy
- 1 and a half ounces of Dubonnet Rouge
- 1 lemon twist to garnish
In a glass, stir together the Calvados and the Dubonnet, pour over ice, and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish and enjoy, just like a Bentley Boy!
High Quality Manufacturing
Bentley’s quality car production is certainly unparalleled. The manufacturer’s overarching commitment is to quality engineering. Considering 80 per cent of all Bentleys ever built are still on the roads today, it appears they are doing a rather good job. Also, despite the fact the brand may hold connotations of heavy fuel consumption and a lack of concern for sustainability, CO2 levels across the fleet have been driven down by 30 per cent in recent times.
Bentley added extra value beyond their superb automobile manufacturing. They offer a specialised, one-off kit for their owners to fulfill their hobby — the hobby being falconry, of course. Bentayga falconry by Mulliner is, admittedly, a rather obscure optional extra, but it depicts exactly what Bentley is about — creating a car for their client, catering to their wants and needs during development. Maybe one day this added feature will take off and be featured at your nearest VW dealership? Who knows!
The flight master station, which is stowed neatly in the boot space of the Bentley Bentayga, includes a GPS tracking system, binoculars, and hand-crafted leather bird hoods. Don’t be concerned if falconry isn’t your forte, however. Bentley promise to appease customers by asking to submit their requests, and their bespoke service will attempt to create a package for any lifestyle or hobby.
Wings from Heaven
Bentley’s design is popular across the globe. Back, when the company was gaining traction in the early 1920s, founder W.O. Bentley called upon the help of close friend and designer, Crosby, to establish a badge that could not be fraudulently reproduced. Therefore, he requested one which featured asymmetric downward aiming feathers. Although ‘wings’ were a popular choice for many car manufacturers when establishing a badge during this era, rumour has it, Bentley’s logo was designed to represent W.O.’s background as an aeronautical engineer during the Great War.
Sold for a staggering £2,784,741, the Works No.” Bentley Speed Six Tourer was sold at Christie’s Le Mans Classic Auction in July 2004. This car won second place in the 1930’s Le Mans. A press release prior to the auction noted, ‘no other car has accomplished so much and, most importantly ‘No.2’ remains in the same conditions since its early racing days in the 1930’.
Bentley’s impressive reputation is certainly an indication of the quality of their manufacturing over the last hundred years — and we certainly can’t wait to see what is in store for the next hundred!