2014 LA Auto Show Preview: Bentley Grand Convertible is the open-top Mulsanne we’ve been waiting for

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 18, 2014

Bentley revealed the first sketches with the convertible version of the Mulsanne back in 2012 but in 2013, company’s new CEO Wolfgang Schreiber axed the project. Still, the man who wanted the convertible version of the Mulsanne a.k.a. Wolfgang Duerheimer is back at Bentley and we knew that the vehicle was back on track.

Today, Bentley unveiled the Grand Convertible Concept, a vehicle that previews the production version of the Mulsanne Convertible. Set to make its world debut at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show, the new Grand Convertible arrives in a splendid Sequin Blue finish, complemented by the silver ‘liquid metal’ bonnet and windscreen frame.

The interior looks pretty impressive and it features 14 naturally tanned leather hides merged with progressive-diamond quilting. In addition, the interior features Sequin Blue thread which is cross-stitched by hand, contrasted by Beluga leather around the top of the doors and extending to the rear tonneau, framed in polished chrome.

The most interesting design element is the rear tonneau, which shows a dark-stained Burr Walnut. Under the hood, there is the iconic 6¾-litre twin-turbo V8 engine, producing 537 hp (395 kW) and 1,100 Nm (811 lb-ft) of torque.

Press Release

Bentley Grand Convertible Concept

The ultimate expression of British automotive luxury is imagined with the Bentley Grand Convertible, the most sophisticated open-top car ever created by Bentley. Iconic yet understated in style and fashioned entirely by hand from the very finest materials, this unrivalled flagship of luxury represents the ultimate in powerful, sensuous roofless motoring.

Bentley Chairman and CEO, Wolfgang Dürheimer commented: "This concept demonstrates Bentley's ability to create a pinnacle convertible Grand Tourer, while embodying elegance beyond compare. With this car we combine the opulent Mulsanne experience with the full sensory indulgence of open-air touring, continuing to unite luxury and performance in new ways. We are eagerly awaiting the response of our customers to this car. We will ensure that this car - if it reaches the roads - will be a highly exclusive, extremely limited collector's piece."

Powerful, Refined, Exquisite

Resplendent in Sequin Blue, originally a bespoke colour created from a single sequin from a customer's haute couture gown, the Grand Convertible features a silver "liquid metal" finish to the bonnet and windscreen frame. Contrasting the rich blue body work is the Bentley directional wheel design, handed to the left and right sides of the car and finished by hand before being polished to a high shine.

The wheels hint at the enormous power and torque that wait under the bonnet. With 537 PS (530 bhp / 395 kW) and 1,100 Nm (811 lb.ft) of torque from Bentley's legendary 6¾-litre twin-turbo V8 engine of the flagship Mulsanne, the Grand Convertible promises the luxury of effortless performance to match its unparalleled style.

As cossetting as it is breath-taking, the interior of the Grand Convertible is a showcase for the abilities of Bentley's master craftsmen. 14 naturally tanned leather hides are merged together with progressive-diamond quilting, with the shape of the pattern changing over the seats and doors in a cabin sized for four adults. Bright blue is used to highlight the extraordinary skill of Bentley's trim specialists, with Sequin Blue thread cross-stitched by hand through the linen-coloured leather. The light hide is contrasted by the sleek elegance of Beluga leather around the top of the doors and extending back to the rear tonneau, framed in polished chrome.

The tonneau itself provides the most significant example of Bentley craftsmanship at its finest. Replete with book-matched, mirror-finished and dark-stained Burr Walnut, the tonneau features the largest piece of wood veneer ever applied to a Bentley. Fashioned entirely by hand, this expanse of veneer is only paralleled by the creations of the world's best furniture makers, and is finished with elegant parallel lines of chromed steel.

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