He stood in the courtyard of the old castle - as calm, majestic and estranged as the massive stones of these walls. Against their background, the dark blue sedan did not seem large, and only coming closer, I fully felt its monumentality - from door handles in two palms to the hood the size of the roof of other business-class cars. If style is a personality, then Bentley Arnage is an outstanding personality. Compared with it, most Mercedes and other standards of prosperity look like furniture from Ikea next to the 17th century ombre table. There is no pretentious dominance of chrome, gilded knitting needles or disproportionately inflated wheels. This car is strict, like a well-trained English servant: he always sets the tone, no matter what orders the owner gives him.
And the owner’s place here is not only in the back seat. Unlike the sister Rolls-Royce, Bentley Arnage suggests that he will not deny himself the pleasure of getting behind the wheel. In terms of driving performance, this Pulman wagon could have argued with other "athletes" before, but now it has received a modified rear suspension coupled with active electro-hydraulic shock absorbers. Well, I have the opportunity to appreciate the innovations both on the narrow winding "landstrasse" of Mecklenburg, and on the magnificent autobahns. Before it starts to rain, you need to try a charged "Arnage T". My finger rests on the massive button of the handle, and the door opens with a slight sigh.
No, they don’t sit down in the Bentley - they come here, settle down, look around, as in a comfortable apartment. In order not to interfere with landing and disembarkation, with the ignition off, the steering wheel leaves up to the stop. You can only envy the review from the driver's seat: a long hood is visible to the very edge, not to mention the magnificent mirrors. I shift my foot from the wide, pimply brake pedal to the narrow and long gas pedal, and the landscape outside the window silently moves.
The first kilometers I get used to this liner with a cat's smooth ride and almost karting accuracy in taxiing. Very tenacious brakes. But the “empty” gas pedal requires skill: moderately fast pressing it does not affect the motor at all, but if you hold your foot longer on the floor, the car, after pausing, makes a lightning-fast throw. However, the “pedal feel” comes pretty quickly.
On the “Landstrasse” the asphalt is not very smooth, there are also paving stones - I use this to evaluate the suspension performance. Surprisingly, the Sport mode has almost no effect on comfort on the lines: the joints and pits Bentley swallows with elephant equanimity. But in fast corners, the difference with the “comfortable” mode is obvious: the car is going much denser, prompting - come on, you can add! Distracting from the landscape, I focus on the highway tape. I go through one bunch of turns, another, third, gradually increasing the pace. And here’s the limit: the tires squeaked briefly, swam to the side of the stern. I quickly correct the trajectory with the wheel, and the Arnage rushes to exit the turn. How, isn't there electronics here? Yes there is, but what! She - like a good power steering - only helps the driver, but does not deprive him of feedback. Pleasure guaranteed!
It was worth to go on the highway, as it began to rain. However, there is no hint of aquaplaning - Pirelli P-Zero Rosso tires, under three tons of total weight, cling to the asphalt with a death grip. The speed exceeded 200, but the pace of acceleration continues to surprise. That's the "maximum speed" - the coveted 270 km / h. Without a hint of glide, the Arnage prescribes smooth corners. But you have to pay for pleasure: the arrow of the fuel gauge inexorably pulled to the left. For ten minutes of "flight" a quarter of the tank as it happened!