Bentley Continental Flying Star by Carrozzeria Touring is on sale for $1Mil

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 22, 2011

JamesList is offering the Bentley Continental Flying Star by Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera, which debuted at the 2010 Geneva Auto Show, for about $1 million (EUR750,000). But the rest of the 19 examples that were built will have a base price of about $800,000 (EUR590,000).

Tagged to be a ‘shooting brake’, the car has been listed for sale in Belgium. In its rear compartment, there are two foldable rear seats and a variable loading space.

The Flying Star, which is based on the Bentley Continental GTC chassis, measures 4.8 meters long (189 inch), 1.9 meters (75 inch) wide and 1.4 meters (55 inch) high.

All Flying Stars will be made to personal specifications and have various power outputs offered by the twin-turbo 6.0-litre W12 engine. For example, customers can choose from the 560 hp version which generates 650 Nm of torque at 1,600 rpm or the GTC Speed variant which develops 750 Nm from 610 hp.

What JamesList is selling is the actual car that was exhibited in Geneva last year. It features the GCT Speed specifications and its power is distributed to all four wheels via a 6-speed automatic gearbox.

Accelerating from zero to 100km/h (0-62mph) takes about 4.8 seconds and it has a top speed of 322km/h (200 mph). Its accessories include the Touring designed luggage set coordinated with the boot trim as well as the distinctive Borrani X-Ray spoke wheels.

The phrase “variations on a theme” typically denotes starting with a blank piece of paper than a larger design challenge. In this instance, the goal was to make sure the vehicle remained to be recognizable as a Bentley while having the body incorporate principles of harmony and elegance in the Touring. This task was difficult given that the GTC basis had to have a new volume added to it. Thus while it had new proportions, the consistency of the overall design needed to be retained.

This is the main reason why only the portion that is in front of its A-pillar and the windshield was retained. When looked at from the rear, its tailgate appears to dive in between its wide rear wings. The oval light chrome bezels on the rear provide a throwback to the fastback cars from Bentley during the 1950s. Meanwhile when viewed from its side, it displays a low roof and when combined with the wide wheel arches and the pronounced quarter panel shoulders, implies perfectly mastered energy.

The challenge was not limited to the exterior as Touring Superleggera designers also faced the same in order to give the interior that same elegance. This elegance is obvious even if the rear seats have been folded. To solve this particular problem, the designers used an "S" shaped trim for the quarter panels in the rear allowing the passenger area to be linked with the rear luggage area.

Making use of a dark green and beige leather contrast helps with the visual unity. As such, the twin individual seats in the rear are able to fold completely resulting in a flat loading surface that is at least 2 meters long and allows for a 1,200-liter capacity.

This particular feature is considered as a first for both its size and segment. The feature thus allows it to meet the functional mission profile while being able to load comfortably a wide variety of equipment. In fact, this set-up can store 4 golfing bags even when the rear seats are not folded down. There is also a bespoke finish which includes the booth carpet in woven leather that offers superior endurance. This can be coordinated with a special luggage set.

The end result is a vehicle that continues the Touring and Flying Star tradition. This is a vehicle that has a design that clearly combines sportiness with elegance with a timeless shape but it continues to have its own strong personality and even individuality.

While the traditional manufacturing skills are already evident, mixing in the digital technologies results in a process that is standard for the Touring Superleggera. When it comes to traditional coach building, one of the distinguishing factors remains to be the large amount of handwork needed in creating a new body.

For this process, a number of practical solutions have been developed for different minor technical issues. Some of the quick and practical solutions were generally based on having an expert eye, years of experience, and common sense. Thus, the final product has been made using the high quality parameters required in the auto industry today. Starting with its A-pillar backwards, the body panels on the exterior have been hand shaped in steel.

These include the now wider rear wings, the roof, and that of the rear section’s internal reinforcements. Meanwhile the door skins and the complete rear bonnet, with its structure, are made of aluminum. Handmade brightwork was also included in relation to the new design of the exterior. For the new rear compartment, the foldable rear seats had to be shaped while a full set of interior panels has been put in.

These interior panels have leather trims putting in extra attention to detail. To make sure that the continuous surfaces have a uniform finish, wide leather hides were used. Once inspection was done, the body was first prepared in white and then painted at Touring’s advanced paint facilities. It does not stop there as the final result even had to undergo again the special final quality audit.

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