2009 Bentley Arnage Review


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2009 Bentley Arnage Overview

The Bentley Arnage, heeding the words of Welsh poet Dylan Thomas, did not go gentle into that good night. Indeed, the 2009 Bentley Arnage, referred to by some experts as not merely a luxury automobile but as an ultra-luxury and ultra-comfortable one, takes the Arnage line out in style and dignity.

Little was subtle about the closing days, after posting a decade of fine service, of this stately four-door flagship sedan. Bentley made sure of that when it put a tag on the final incarnation of the Arnage. The memorable moniker? Final Series, of course. The Final Series celebrates not only the end of the Arnage era, but the 50th birthday of the company’s powerful V8 engine.

Besides an as-expected long and impressive list of performance areas in which the 2009 Bentley Arnage shines, there are nice final touches as well. Undoubtedly a favorite of many is the cocktail cabinet in the rear, loaded up, quite appropriately, with a steel flask and shot glasses carrying the “Final Series” brand. No going gentle, indeed.

In the first half of the model year, Bentley offered the Arnage in its traditional trims of the base R, extended-length RL and sporty T. The R and RL come with a 6.75-liter V8 at 450 hp with 645 lb-ft of torque.

The Final Series, introduced for the second half, picks up where the Arnage T trim left off. It gets the T’s robust twin-turbocharged V8 that’s good for 500 horsepower with a huge 738 lb-ft of torque, which is paired with a smooth-as-it-gets 6-speed automatic transmission with a sports function. The package, Bentley says, can go 0-60 in 5.2 seconds and has a top speed of 179 mph. Fuel mileage estimates for all trims are 10 mpg city/14 highway.

The 2009 Bentley Arnage boasts no shortage of color options. It’s available in 42 exterior colors and offers a choice of bird’s-eye maple, walnut, oak and black lacquer interior trim to complement its 25 leather colors. A navigation system, diamond-quilted leather seats, heated and powered front and rear seats and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror come standard. The plush and handcrafted interior carries a variety of trim options, too, including aluminum, chrome and a selection of different types of wood.

The Final Series pampers its passengers further with satellite navigation, an engine start button, flip-down wooden picnic tables for riders in the rear and an upgraded stereo unit with an enhanced display screen. Instead of a CD player, it has an SD memory card. An 11-speaker, even-higher end Naim sound system, massage seats, backseat remote controls for the entertainment system and a rear seat bottle cooler are among other options. The end-all Arnage gets some Final Series badging as well.

The 2009 Bentley Arnage, for all its pomp and touches of royalty, is not a car to simply gaze at and admire. The Arnage T and the Final Series in particular are powerful performers, as seen in part by the acceleration numbers. With its computer-controlled adaptive suspension, the 2009 Bentley Arnage also handles and rides impressively. While chauffeurs get to drive their share of Bentleys, reviewers note that the large sedan has long been known not only as a car to be driven around in, but one that’s fun to drive.

The 2009 Bentley Arnage comes with improved traction and stability control, antilock disc brakes and a full array of front and side curtain airbags. A backup camera is available.

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