The Bentley Flying Spur may have dropped its "Continental" badging, but it's still a relative. It has put some pretty distance between itself and the two-door, especially at the rear, where it teases a squared-off stance that's a throwback of recent vintage. Drag is down, from 0.33 to 0.29, and distinctiveness is up, especially in the darkest, richest colors.
Brand identity is the single most important touchstone for ultra-luxury brands, so the Flying Spur retains much of the familiar front-end appearance from the Continental GT. It hasn't strayed wildly from the first-generation sedan, either, though the oval headlamps are bigger, and they're now mounted outboard, not inboard as they've been since 2005. The grille's framed in thicker body color, and has a center spline.
The new Spur isn't without its foibles. Some details are gems, like the Bentley "B" logo cast into the fender vents. The LED ovals that light up its taillamps don't illuminate the entire shape, and could be more subtly rendered. The same holds true for the LED brake light mounted at the base of the rear glass.The Flying Spur's cabin remains a gorgeously fitted, finely organized atmosphere that swings wildly from refined to posh, depending on the finishes you select. Knurled shifter, dark-stained wood, lavishly applied leathers, all of them boost a very efficient twin-binnacle cockpit into the ultra-luxury leagues, without complicating it. Some pieces are recognizable from other vehicles--the navigation screen and transmission surround are bits we've seen before--but they're in a discreet harmony with the Bentley bits that embroidered the sticker price of our test car so impressively.