In what must have been an intriguing step for Bentleyphiles, the company that W.O. Bentley conjured in Cricklewood, England back in 1919, the year my mother was born, has experienced something of an epiphany: With its newly introduced Bentayga – if you need a tutorial, it’s pronouned Ben-TAY-guh – Bentley is all of a sudden in the SUV business. There’s considerable interest, given the fact that the crew at Crewe has loving pieced together some 20,000 examples of the base V-8 Bentayga since the model was announced. Thats’s an impressive figure, enough so that the Bentayga joins the rest of Bentley’s lineup in becoming eligible for the Mulliner Personal Commissioning Guide, a wellspring of personalizing that befits a vehicle in this lofty category.
A look at the bespoke Bentayga interior above reveals that at first glance it’s in keeping with SUV all-activity aesthetic practice in its color selection, note the jaunty yellow accents throughout the cabin. The Mulliner guide, named for Bentley’s eternal London coachbuilding partner, is a means to take this variety of self-expression to a level most people probably don’t dare dream about. The potential choices involved are too numerous to list, but here’s a few facts you call mull: In terms of interior hides alone, the Mulliner guide will offer buyers 27 selections. To that, you can add 100 choices for painted veneers in the cabin, wheel options, stitching selections, an out-of-sight paint palette, and on and on. If you’re of the right age, you’ll recall that the Big Three used to allow this kind of option proliferation even on low-price cars during the 1960s before the domestic industry came to realize the cost and complexity that it caused to the ordering process and stopped it. In Bentley’s orbit, these considerations don’t matter. The Bentayga’s V8’s 4.0-liter twin-turbo engine produces 542 horsepower. The model range will grow soon to add a hybrid and the Bentagya Speed, fitted with the 6.0-liter W-12 we discussed here recently, good for a thumping 626 horsepower and a claimed top end of 190 MPH.