Bentley Bentayga SUV - Interior & comfort
The Bentley Bentayga has a truly luxurious interior, even if some options’ prices will make your eyes water
There can be no doubting the Bentley Bentayga is a special car from the moment you climb on board. Leather, wood and metal combine to make a truly luxurious interior. The seats offer 22-way adjustment, making it easy to find the perfect driving position, while excellent sound insulation and quiet engines make long journeys supremely hushed.
When we tested a model fitted with 21-inch wheels, we noticed that some bumps and imperfections to the road surface weren’t smothered quite as effectively as you might expect from a Bentley. However, we recommend avoiding the even bigger optional 22-inch alloy wheels, as these are likely to make this small quibble more of an issue.
The V8 petrol model is great to drive but occasionally the ride quality doesn’t quite match up to the high expectations of a Bentley, perhaps as a result of its cornering ability. You never quite get the absolutely silent glide you anticipate, with a certain amount of interference always making its way into the cabin. The ride is by no means bad, but given the Bentley badge and price tag, the odd buyer may be slightly disappointed.
Bentley Bentayga dashboard
The Bentayga’s dashboard is a work of art. Fit and finish are perfect and the quality of materials used is outstanding, particularly the hand-matched wood veneers. Everything – from the ‘organ stop’ air-vent controls to the indicator stalks – operates with remarkable solidity, while the eight-inch touchscreen system and analogue clock are emblematic of the Bentayga’s interior experience: they offer a perfectly judged blend of modern technology and old-fashioned charm.
There is one tiny caveat to this praise: look hard and you’ll find some switches from the Audi Q7. The steering wheel controls, for instance, are identical – although you do get metal, rather than plastic scroll wheels in the Bentley. It may seem churlish to pick on the Bentayga for this, but considering the Q7 is a third of the price, some Bentley customers may resent such an obvious cost-saving measure.
The Bentayga is fitted with more standard equipment than most luxury cars. Naturally, you get leather upholstery, but there’s also a power-operated hands-free bootlid, a panoramic sunroof, LED headlights and soft-close doors as well as sat nav and a wi-fi hotspot. A slight sticking point with the infotainment is that it’s an older system than Audi fits in the Q7 and looks a little dated by comparison. It’s not especially intuitive to use, either. It comes as a bit of a letdown in a car that’s so refined in every other way.
Bentley’s options are best considered from a comfortable chair in your living room – you’ll want to be sitting down when you look at the vast and expensive list. Event Specification adds a leather-trimmed rear seat that extends from the boot floor for £2,400, while the All-Terrain Specification toughens up the car’s underbody, protecting you from any stones and scrapes you may encounter over rough terrain. With this fitted, the Bentayga is capable of serious off-roading; it’s not quite as adept as a Range Rover, but it’s not far off.
Other options include lambswool mats, a 20-speaker Naim stereo (£6,300) and a heated steering wheel. You can also order an exclusive hamper set for £21,000. This may seem expensive, but it represents excellent value for money when compared to the solid-gold self-winding Breitling clock, for which Bentley asks £115,000.