Bentley R-Type Review

1953 Bentley R-Type 4.5 litre inline six from North America

Model year1953
Year of manufacture1952
First year of ownership2012
Most recent year of ownership2012
Engine and transmission 4.5 litre inline six Manual
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 3 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired47000 miles
Most recent distance47800 miles
Previous carRolls Royce Silver Cloud II


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Nothing thus far!

Servicing is doable by a competent DIY'er, however specialist attention may be required for certain jobs, so be sure you don't live too far from someone with know-how! Also, spares prices aren't bad (by Crewe standards), but some bits, as with any vintage car, can be difficult and/or expensive to obtain. Just go into Bentley ownership with your eyes open, set aside some maintenance funds, and there won't be any surprises, as these cars are incredibly well built, and sturdy as can be.

General Comments:

I've owned several Bentleys, but this is my first R-Type. I was fortunate in that the previous owner unloaded about $40K (USD) of his hard earned money on a complete engine and gearbox overhaul by one of the best specialists in the UK. I had a '60 Cloud II, which I thought was one of the worst cars to drive (but nice to be driven in), so I wasn't sure what to expect with the R-Type, but it's a much smaller car, and has turned out to be most enjoyable to pilot.

The paint and leather are still original and are 'patinated', shall we say... but everyone loves those characteristics about the car, and furthermore, I'm not afraid to drive it wherever and leave it in a car park.

The engine is what you would expect from a Crewe-built automobile; sweetly silent and smooth. The gear change snicks between ratios with rifle-bolt precision, and there is loads of torque on tap for easy pootling around town.

The Yale locks still all operate with lovely, smooth precision, there is no sag from the doors, and the car is amazingly easy to drive at 70mph with the regular flow of traffic.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th October, 2012

Average review marks: 7.0 / 10, based on 1 review