One-Off Bentley Continental GT Azure Debuts in Homage to the 1953 R-Type

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In 2022, Bentley is reviving the Azure name as a new package with a focus on occupant comfort and luxury. Now, the brand is showing off a special example of the Continental GT with equipment that pays homage to the 1953 Continental R-Type in the automaker’s heritage collection.

Bentley delivered the R-Type Continental to Dr. Rowland Guenin of Switzerland in December 1953. He described it with its ivory exterior and red cabin. The automaker acquired the vehicle in 2001 and restored it to how it was when the coupe left the factory.

The matching Continental GT Azure wears Old English White, which is very similar to the ivory on the ’53 R-Type. Bright chrome trim accentuates areas such as the grille and along the sides. It rides on 22-inch wheels in black and polished.

The Continental GT Azure’s cabin features Cricket Ball brown leather instead of the red seats on the Type-R. Both vehicles have Burr Walnut veneer covering the dashboard. For modern cars, Bentley provides an open-pore finish so that there is a patina similar to the material on classic vehicles. For contrast, the other trim pieces are Australian straight grain veneer with boxwood inlays and gold overlays. The R-Type Continental’s silhouette is on the treadplate.

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Bentley Continental GT Azure Inspired By 1953 R-Type Continental
Bentley Continental GT Azure Inspired By 1953 R-Type Continental

The Azure plan includes quite a bit of tools. The Front Seat Comfort specification adds a massage seat with six programmable settings. It also gets the Bentley Dynamic Ride system with active anti-roll bars to keep the car from tilting into corners. Touring spec features adaptive cruise control, lane assist, traffic assist and an infrared camera to identify pedestrians, cyclists or animals outside the beam of headlights. There is a head display as well.

This custom Continental GT Azure will be part of Bentley’s UK press fleet.

The R-Type Continental debuted in 1952. They featured a 4.6 liter inline-six that produced 153 horsepower (114 kilowatts). A prototype made its way around the banked Montlhèry race track near Paris at an average speed of 118.75 miles per hour (191.1 kilometers per hour) over five laps. This made it one of the fastest four-seater vehicles one could buy at the time. Bentley made 208 examples when production ended in 1955.

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