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Brand New Bentley Mulsanne

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Mike Stevens | Dec 1, 2009

IT REPRESENTS THE PINNACLE of luxury cars - the 2011 Bentley Mulsanne.

With over 100 colours, 24 two-tone combinations and a similar number of possible trim combinations, very well-heeled customers will be able to create their own unique version from millions of possible permutations.

Revealed at August's Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance in California, the all-new Bentley - previously known only as the Grand Bentley - draws its inspiration from the 8-litre Bentley of the early 1930s, the largest and most luxurious car of its time.

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Along with the extensive list of external styling options, the Mulsanne's interior will bear a similarly long list, including 24 leather trim colours, five different leather piping colours, 23 seat belt colours and nine wood types of wood finishing.

Other interior extras include a choice of cross or contrast stitching and extra Bentley badges.

Not enough choice for you? Run the calculator over all those mixes and matches and the resulting possible combinations number into the mllions (you'd have to reckon some of the mixes would be a tad unappealing... even for coke-addled royalty and pop-stars).

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The Mulsanne is powered by a redesigned version of the Arnage's aluminium 6.75 litre V8, developing over 1020Nm of torque from 1600rpm.

Every facet of the V8 has been revised. Bentley says the new engine will offer vastly improved acceleration and performance through the rev range, as well as superior fuel efficiency and emissions levels.

The 2011 Bentley Mulsanne is an all-new model, designed and engineered at the company's Crewe factory in the UK, where it will also be built.

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This all-new model isn't the first Bentley to bear the Mulsanne name. The original Bentley Mulsanne - built from 1980 until 1992 - also offered a performance-focused drive with an exclusive price tag.

Bentley says the new Mulsanne is not an evolution or replacement for the Arnage, but rather a unique new model designed to embody the spirit of W O Bentley's original passion for performance and luxury.

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Introducing the Bentley Mulsanne at Pebble Beach, Dr Franz-Josef Paefgen, Chairman and Chief Executive of Bentley Motors, said:

"The challenge we set our engineers was to create a grand new Bentley that would stand as the pinnacle of British luxury motoring, offering the world's most exclusive driving experience.

"They have responded to this challenge with real passion and the result is a luxury grand tourer that sets new standards in terms of comfort, effortless performance and hand-crafted refinement – the very qualities for which Bentley is renowned."

The 2011 Bentley Mulsanne will go on sale in Europe from the middle of next year, with a worldwide market launch to follow soon after. (Better start slogging the ducats away now.)

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