Bentley Mulsanne Diamond Jubilee Edition -Beijing Auto Show

Bentley-Mulsanne-Diamond-Jubilee-Edition Like most carmakers, Bentley was hit hard by the global recession. But the brand is bouncing back in a big way thanks to—you guessed it—China, which has surpassed the U.S. as Bentley’s largest sales market. Underscoring China’s most favored nation status at Bentley is the creation of 60 Mulsanne Diamond Jubilee editions exclusively for the that market.

The 60 Diamond Jubilee Special editions celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s 60th year perched atop the throne doing little more than, well, perching. And waving. But more than anything, they’re just super-cushy Mulsannes. The Diamond Jubilee models are visually distinguishable by a handful of exclusive features: six exterior colors featuring mono- or dual-tone variations of the red, white, and blue hues of the Union Jack, bright metal lower grilles and side vents, “jewel” fuel-filler cap, 21-inch wheels, and Bentley badges on the rearmost pillars.

Their sumptuously appointed interiors feature burr walnut veneers, lambswool rugs, massaging/ventilated front and rear seats, “Naim for Bentley” audio, rear-seat entertainment, and diamond-quilted leather trim (also of the red, off-white and blue persuasions) offset by gold threading. The rear quarters’ lavishness in particular reflects the Chinese aristocracy’s penchant for being driven—much like the Queen—which also explains why no mechanical changes were made to the Mulsanne’s chassis or its torque-laden, 505-hp, 6.75-liter V-8.

God Sell the Queen!

Why would Bentley bring the Queen into all of this? Apparently, they love her over there. Noting China’s “respect and genuine interest shown towards so many aspects of British life, and most especially The Royal Family,” Richard Charlesworth, director of royal and VIP relations of Bentley Motors, calls the Diamond Jubilee models “our way of reciprocating the appreciation for British institutions, creativity and services we have been shown in China.”

Car and Driver