New Cars? I'd Rather Have A 1960s Bentley S2

You can keep your computerised management systems and shove your second-hand Ford Focus, just buy a vintage Bentley for half the price instead...
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You can keep your computerised management systems and shove your second-hand Ford Focus, just buy a vintage Bentley for half the price instead...

Do the modern "computer management systems" drive you fucking mad? Seems like that poxy orange light comes on every time you enter a modern marvel of engineering.

New cars. Who needs 'em?

For a start they aren't very environmentally friendly are they? Simply by being new there's a big problem isn't there? If we stopped buying new cars there'd be no demand for new cars, which would mean there'd be no need to use all the materials, labour, showrooms and factories it takes to make and sell new cars. And all the independent suppliers at every stage of manufacture and marketing would have nothing to do. No flashy showrooms. No expensive TV commercials. And their suppliers would be out of work too. We could help save the planet, but piss a lot of people off.

I say, "Sod new".

Buy "pre-owned"...This lovely term was invented by Bentley and Rolls Royce. Buying used means you're saving the planet. That alone is reason enough. If that is not a good argument think about the money you'll save buying used. We all know new cars lose around a third of their retail value as they drive off the forecourt. What mug has money to burn at this rate?

Research tells us a 3-year-old car is roughly half the price of a new car, so the saving is serious. Immerse yourself in the world of used cars a little more and you'll quickly realize there are smile inducing bargains beckoning those with an adventurous spirit.

Be careful. Lots of old cars are lots of trouble. They breakdown. They rust. They wear out. What’s more they look old. We need to remember not every old car looked good when it was new so most of them look shit as they age.

Bentleys all cost a bomb brand new. Let ten years pass and watch what's happens. Let twenty years pass and you won't believe your eyes. Go to Ebay and Autotrader and have a look. You’ll fall off your chair and eat your hat.

Luckily one brand stands the test of time. It gets looked after and maintained properly because it costs a fortune new and commands 100% respect. It has an air of authority and excellence. It consistently creates magnificent looking models. It is probably the best way to "arrive" anywhere and it won't be beaten on comfort and ride. To those in the know this brand is so cool it's ice cold.

I'm talking Bentley. What else?

These days certain models can be had for next to nothing. Bentleys all cost a bomb brand new. Let ten years pass and watch what's happens. Let twenty years pass and you won't believe your eyes. Go to Ebay and Autotrader and have a look. You’ll fall off your chair and eat your hat.

The 1970's saw Bentley take a back seat to Rolls Royce. This was an era of conspicuous consumption. The flying lady mascot was revered. These days it gets nicked. Bentley’s T Type was the same shape as Rolls' Silver Shadow. A brute of a box favored by the rich, famous and infamous. The choice of gangsters, rock stars and pools winners as well as landed gentry and city slickers.

Here's the good news. An old Shadow can cost as little as £3K.No I'm not joking. For £10K you can find an exemplary example with full service history in a nice colour, not gold. The Bentley T Type version was less popular back then so it is harder to find right now. You have to look but they're out there. Waiting to be discovered. Think about it. You could be driving a beautiful Bentley for the price of a second hand Ford Focus.

There’s no seatbelts to crease your Richard James suit and no need to pay road tax as it's exempt. All you can hear is the clock and the tyres as you "proceed" with dignity and grace.

The 1980's saw Bentley make some monster machines. Big, heavy, comfy armchairs on wheels. 30 years ago these cars broke the bank. £80K. £100K. More. Much more. I remember the late Terence Donovan, snapper to the stars, chopping in his chocolate brown Corniche convertible for a black Bentley 8.Prince Charles wouldn't be seen outside his racing green Turbo R. Even Terry Wolgan had a Mulsanne. All these cars are the same body shape but details differ. Some are fast. Some are fucking fast. These days the Brooklands, the 8,the Mulsanne and Mulsanne "S" and the Turbo R can all be bought for less than £20K.Sometimes far less.

The 1990's saw the launch of Bentley's Continental R.Hand built, it’s huge and wonderfully hunky. This car flies faster than most 911's and it has more presence than Lady Gaga. With 2 doors, five seats and a big old boot this is the car to buy if you want to chomp motorway miles. £30K will buy you a beauty from the early 90's.All properly serviced and sorted. A car that cost nearly £200K less than 20 years ago for £30K! Bloody madness.

To find the star of the show we need to travel back beyond the 70's to the 1960's.Back then it was very much "us" and "them”. Social strata didn't blur and merge like they do these days. The wealthy kept themselves removed from reality. To help them live life at its finest they were driven in a Bentley "S" Series. Four doors. Herds of soft leather. Forests of the finest polished wood. An engine you couldn't hear and a back so large you could live in it. Find a nice Bentley S2 and your life will be complete. The V8 engine and single headlight S2 is the best of the S Type bunch. There’s no seatbelts to crease your Richard James suit and no need to pay road tax as it's exempt. All you can hear is the clock and the tyres as you "proceed" with dignity and grace.

With power steering you guide this beauty rather than steer it. Imagine you're the Captain of a small ship as you navigate potholes and pedestrian crossings.

These days the world's finest car can be had for less than £30K.

I know it's not practical and hasn't got a roof rack but it is beautiful. And it will seat five in total comfort. And it will make you feel very, very happy.

What more do you need?

www.autotrader.co.uk

www.carandclassic.co.uk

www.classiccarsforsale.co.uk