To celebrate the renewal of its complete model range, Bentley has hosted a live driving event for the first time since February. The event featured examples from the whole model range including the new GT Mulliner, as well the new Bentayga. The event was held at The Falcon, a newly opened Northamptonshire hotel at Castle Ashby.
Other than the latest models, the guests were also given a rare treat to be given access to a select number of cars from Bentley’s Heritage Fleet, which gave the event its name, ‘Toy Box.’
Four cars that were featured to showcase the evolution of the Bentley Continental across its lifetime were:
- a 1952 R-Type Continental, Bentley’s own car, and the most expensive car of its time. When it was launched, they were the fastest four-door coupe in the world with only 208 units built.
- a 2003 Continental R Mulliner Final Series. This was the last two-door car that Bentley built before the Continental GT and only 11 units were built.
- The first-generation Continental Supersports which was registered specifically for the event and represented by the last car to be constructed in 2012.
- a one-off 2019 Pikes Peak Continental GT – the very example that Rhys Millen used that made a new Production Class record of 10:18:488 at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in 2019
The comprehensive Continental GT family, with all combinations of coupe, Convertible, V8, and W12, met with the latest Flying Spur W12 on the roads at Castle Ashby.
A fleet of first-generation, electric power, Bentayga Hybrids chauffeured guests and they were brought to a specially designed course that showed the power of the Bentayga V8 as it ran through off-road paces, which included steep inclines and descents, wading through deep water, and driving through side angles of up to 32 degrees.
The recently completed Mulsanne Speed was also part of the event, giving guests the final chance to drive the former Bentley flagship.
A number of prized cars completed the Toy Box and were put on display at The Falcon including:
- A supercharged 4 ½ liter ‘Blower’ which was one of Bentley’s own road-going homologation demonstrator from 1930.
- The Bentley Mulliner Bacalar – symbolizing the return of fully bespoke vehicles from the world’s oldest coachbuilding business
- #7 Bentley Speed 8, Le Mans 2003 winner
To ensure the safety of both guests and staff, the event was held under very strict COVID protocols which included having the entire staff and hotel personnel antigen-tested before the event, on-site during the event, and even immediately afterward.
By following these strict guidelines, Bentley was able to host 70 guests so they can experience the best Bentleys from past and present in a safe and responsible manner.