You can buy the Flying Spur with a V8 or one of the company’s legendary W12s. The W12 is, of course, the prestigious piece of kit — a 460kW/800Nm behemoth of a motor that will sling the Flying Spur to 100km/h in 4.3 seconds and on up to the magic of 320km/h, if the autobahn allows.
But for me, the 4l V8 is where the sensible buyer is. I’m aware that the 12-cylinder buyers will always be there. They want the biggest numbers and Bentley will happily give them, but as a driver’s car, as a car to really use, the V8 is my choice by a distance. The reason is simple — 388kW is hardly “weak”, and while it has a lower torque figure, the V8S still pumps out 680Nm, and at a much more useful 1 700RPM too. Hitting 100km/h in 4.6 seconds will see off pretty much everything, as well.
Most critically, however, the V8 weighs less, giving those enormous front tyres more of a chance to bite properly when pushing on, thereby reducing understeer and that uneasy sense of weight. Additionally, its significantly reduced fuel consumption means you can, on a sensible cruise, expect a range of 600km or so.