Not only is the new Bentley Flying Spur the very first Bentley to have All-Wheel Steering to enhance both stability at cruising speeds and the car’s agility around town, but it is also equipped with the world’s most sophisticated and luxuriously handcrafted stitched car interior.
There are 350 unique leather pieces on the Flying Spur that are adorned to 60 bespoke components in the car’s interior. These pieces pass through the hands of a total of 141 Bentley craftspeople, who between them use over three kilometres of thread on each car.
To be able to work on a Bentley, craftsmen and women are required to train under one of Bentley’s Master Trainers for a minimum of five months. This is the time that is needed initially to learn about the vast array of techniques that are required to craft the interiors of these luxury cars to the highest standard.
The Bentley handcrafted steering wheel is the centre piece of the Flying Spur’s interior and is also the item that requires the most elaborate hand-stitching and leatherwork. A cross-stitched steering wheel involves five meters of thread being precisely passed through 352 sew holes in order to achieve 168 distinctive cross stitches. It takes three and a half hours to complete a single steering wheel by a skilled craftsperson, using a bespoke pair of needles as it is way too complicated to use a machine.
The leather used inside the Flying Spur is sustainably sourced from Northern European bulls, entirely as by-products of the meat industry and interestingly, the more temperate climate in the region means that there are fewer parasites and thus the leather remains naturally blemish free.
As a Bentley customer, you can choose from 14 interior leather hide colours which in turn can be complemented by a large selection of 23 different colours of contrasting thread, making the interior of your car personal to you.
Bentley craftsmen and women use five separate types of sewing machine as well as different thicknesses of thread, which contribute to the overall level of complexity and detail that go into creating the Flying Spur’s handcrafted interior. To give you just one example. The stitches that go around airbag components are delicately applied with a thinner thread to ensure the airbag deploys safely.
It takes a total of 12 hours alone just to assemble by hand, the beautiful leather seats in the Flying Spur. Take the headrests for example, each one has the embroidered Bentley wings, which is comprised of 5,103 individual stitches.
Last and by no means least, the Bentley’s interior is finished with three-dimensional diamond quilted leather door inserts, which is an automotive first and was inspired by the Bentley EXP 10 Speed 6 design concept.
For more information on the new Bentley Flying Spur, please visit www.NewFlyingSpur.com
Simon Burrell is Editor of Our Man Behind The Wheel, a professional photographer and former saloon car racing driver.
Photographs courtesy of Bentley Motors