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Car of the Month - February 2000
Rolls-Royce Flying Spur, 1994, #RCX54607,
Longwheelbase Sports Saloon


Rolls-Royce Flying Spur

Rolls-Royce informed their authorized dealers that from April 1994 the new Rolls-Royce Flying Spur could be ordered with first deliveries of the limited series commencing from July 1994. The designation “Flying Spur” was more familiar for Bentley, because the coachbuilder H.J. Mulliner (in the meantime having been purchased by Rolls-Royce) during the 50ies and early 60ies had offered four door versions of the Bentley S Continental as Flying Spur. Because a Flying Spur was to be found in the coat of arms of the Johnstone family - several members had been senior managers of H.J. Mulliner – the designation had its roots with a Scottish clan. The Rolls-Royce Flying Spur was the first ever model with the classic radiator sporting a turbo-charged engine. For quite a few years Rolls-Royce had gained experience as regards turbo-charged engines on a variety of Bentley models, hence not only the name but the powertrain too could be traced to the Bentley side of the company's business.

Rolls-Royce Flying Spur


Rolls-Royce Flying Spur, Interior Nonetheless the traditional aspects of a Rolls-Royce being a tremendously comfortable motor car were not neglected. This was expressed by the fact that the Rolls-Royce Flying was offered solely as a long wheelbase version. Thus occupants of the electrically adjustable rear seats enjoyed 4 in (ca. 10 cm) more legroom than offered by the mainstream model. Neither vanity mirrors neatly applied to the C-posts nor picnic-tables in the rear of the front seats’ backrests were missing. Liquid crystal monitors set into the headrests could be decided upon as part of the on-board video equipment.

 


Rolls-Royce Flying Spur, Fascia

Rolls-Royce Flying Spur, door sillFor fascia and applications a choice of wooden veneers was offered to select from. Polished sill plates engraved “Flying Spur” left no doubt that this was an exclusive model with a character of its own.


The most vital change though had taken place under the bonnet  where an engine was fitted with turbocharger and intercooler. Power was sufficient to guarantee acceleration from standstill to 60mph in a fraction under 7 seconds; top speed was electronically limited to 140 mph (225 km/h). The automatic ride control which changed damper settings in 1/100 of a second in response to acceleration, deceleration, road surface condition and steering changes had been adapted accordingly. A higher rear axle ration was chosen plus new suspension bushes. 255/65VR15 whitewall tyres on light alloy rims identical to those of the 93 model year Bentley Turbo R were fitted.

Rolls-Royce Flying Spur, Engine

Though the Rolls-Royce Flying Spur’s sales figure only just exceeded 100 motor cars, it is more than a mere “niche” model, as but a few years later the cars from the last series of the Silver Spirit generation (1997 „New“ Rolls-Royce Silver Spur and Rolls-Royce Park Ward) sported turbo-charged engines.

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Rolls-Royce Flying Spur
 

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