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Derestrictor

18,764 posts

146 months

[news] 
Monday 9th January 2012 quote quote all
Allow me to qualify.

Even an early Red Label will leave you awestruck.

It's very true that the imperiousness of the Turbo R cars was abandoned with the saloons from 98 but once Crewe went back to the venerable 6.75 for duties in 2000, the combo of sheer modernity interacting with something under the bonnet secretly devised by the factory's secret, Russian skunk works, 'TSVO' (Tchaikovsky Special Vehicle Ops) was a sheer brilliance of delivery so rounded, it meant you only had one reaction to the plunging of that thing which charges.

Inane chuckling.

I'm bloody sure the car Broughtons supplied was a prototype since it didn't have the Volvo aping, pop up sat nav atop the dash but did it matter?



No...

dazzalse

303 posts

64 months

[news] 
Monday 9th January 2012 quote quote all
I often read these posts and it amazes me how everyone forgets what a brilliant car the Arnage R is and how useable, comfortable and with just the right blend of power v comfort, we have had 3 Arnage R's and 1 T all bought when they were 3 - 6 months old and they really have the edge over the T in terms of comfort. Bentley invested a lot of money in the chassis of the Arnage at the end of 2001 ( for the 2002 model year0and they really transformed the cars in terms of ride and handling.

Our last Arnage a 2009 model year T never really had the comfort of the previous R, much had been written how the six speed gearbox transformed the car but in the real world it is hardly noticeable, I bought this car to replace a 2005 model Arnage R and really only bought the T as the colour and spec were just what we were looking for and nearly new Arnage's were becoming thin in the ground at that point in time, however it has the most amazing road presence, 20 mpg is possible with a light foot but the car even being so new was not without problems, mainly around the Naim Audio and factory rear entertainment that constantly drained the batteries, the Naim system was good not not exceptional, rear entertainment the kids found to complicated, and out of the 4 Arnages it was the car that we struggled to love. This was traded for a new Phantom last summer but the Phantom does lack the soul of the Arnage but has more road presence and better ride with better noise suppression.

I can speak of most of the models in the Bentley line up from 1998 onwards as our first Bentley was a Brooklands R Mulliner (the most sorted and run out model for the Z class cars) in terms of the Arnage the most sorted would probably be a R 2005 model year onwards, forget super low mileage cars as they need to be used and suffer when they dont, Azures are noisy and compared to the Arnage the Continental T/R dont represent value for money - test drive many as they all drive different even the same models

2708420018

179 posts

84 months

[news] 
Tuesday 10th January 2012 quote quote all
I should be interested to know which Continental R Mulliner Alexwagner drove. Did it have the 420 bhp engine, the wide body, flared wheel arches and uprated suspension and steering lockwhich were standard on the "Mulliner". Many dealers are mistakenly advertising all Continental Rs as Mulliners and whilst they were all coach built by Mulliner the "Mulliner" is a totally different animal and will start at £60k. The T is 5 inches shorter and 160kg lighter but with identical quoted performance figures. Better handling but at the expense of rear seat room.

Have a look at

http://www.rrsilverspirit.com/models/index.htm

This will give you a detailed insight into the all the models.

Paul

Derestrictor

18,764 posts

146 months

[news] 
Tuesday 10th January 2012 quote quote all
^^^ clap

alexwagner

Original Poster:

56 posts

44 months

[news] 
Tuesday 10th January 2012 quote quote all
Yes, the Conti R Mulliner seemed to be the real deal: 420BHP (it certainly felt as fast as the Conti T that I tried back-to-back), flared arches, high price, etc.

It was located near Paris:
http://www.lacentrale.fr/auto-occasion-annonce-156...

(if you're surprised by the high price, it's normal as LHD cars currently command higher prices than RHD, and the exchange rate compounds this)

The steering rack however was slow and wooly compared to the sharp and lively Conti T. And the suspension was wollowy compared to the well-controled T. This despite the T having twice as many miles as the R Mulliner. Still, maybe it was a bad one, and I should try another... But frankly, even if all other things were equal (steering + suspension) I'd rather save 160Kg and forego some legroom (I sat in the back of each and they felt comparably tight).


Advertisement

2708420018

179 posts

84 months

[news] 
Wednesday 11th January 2012 quote quote all
Certainly looks the real deal. The price is amazing although one British dealer has had a LHD Continental SC for sale for a long time at £135,000. One French dealer has one for sale at 350,000 Euro!! must be more than it cost new.
With the T there is also a Mulliner version and a Le Mans version Prior to 1998 they all had a 400bhp engine. The chassis number will tell you a lot about the year , engine etc.
Best of luck with your search. Look out for a complete service record particularly the expensive hydraulic service after 6 years or 60,000 miles. Check the door sills for corrosion and make sure all the electrics work. Automatic headlight operation and twin air horns are prone to failure.
Then take it to the Cote D'Azure and do a bit of posing!
Paul

allister

16 posts

32 months

[news] 
Thursday 12th January 2012 quote quote all
Firstly, thank you Alex for your detailed response to my question. Also deristrictor, bluebottle911 and anyone else I may have forgotten, thank you all for your contributions. Your knowledge and advice is invaluable and gratefully received..... I will probably go down the road that Alex suggests of something like a 2003 - 2005 Arnage T.

It's very difficult sometimes with cars, if you continue to go that little bit further for the latest updates, you can go on forever and sometimes with little benefit! For example, I'd like the headlamp upgrade (approx 2005) which pushes the price up approx another £10k from the 2003 model. Then I begin to think, well if I'm going for the 2005, I'd really like the improved six speed ZF gearbox (If it was an improvement?)but then that takes me on to the 2006 - 2007 model, and again at least another £10K..... All of a sudden, you've gone from approx £35K to approx £55K - £60K!

I'm looking to buy an Arnage T as I love the car, I'd love to say money is no object, but of course to a point it is!

I want something that feels special (a rare thing to find in a car these days!) and I want something that remains good value.... If I start going to £55 - £60K I've further to fall with depreciation, and am I really getting that much more car?

I'm going slightly off the subject here but maybe it will ring a bell with some of you. I currently own a 2004 Range Rover TD6 Vogue in Black with Ivory Leather, I paid £22K for this one owner car when it was only 3 years old (over 4 years ago). It had 40,000 miles on the clock and was then, as it still is now, in immaculate condition. It has always been serviced at Landrover, although has now covered 136,000 miles, yet I still think it is worth around £10K... So it's cost me less than £3k per year in depreciation! And that has been a large part of it's joy!

Of course, it needed a new gearbox recently at £4K, as well as stupid things such as a headlamp wiper motor at £355, Xenon Headlamp bulb at £150 etc, etc, etc... So while it's never been cheap to maintain, I feel that it has provided excellent value for money.

And I suppose that's what I'm aiming to achieve (or at least as much as is possible with the Arnage T). I know it's never going to be cheap to run and maintain, but I do feel I will get added joy from knowing that someone else has taken the bulk of the depreciation, and that I've bought the right car at the right age without too greater compromise in later advances and technology!

From my experience if I can do this the car will remain a joy... Failure to do so, can actually make a buyer very miserable not to mention costing them a small fortune! (I know this from my brothers experience with a Ferrari 355 GTS!)

Having read all your comments, I suspect that an approx 2003 Arnage T should best enable me to achieve this... Any disagreements or further contributions from anyone will be gratefully received.

Many thanks to you all.

Allister

alexwagner

Original Poster:

56 posts

44 months

[news] 
Thursday 12th January 2012 quote quote all
I agree Allister and reached same conclusion for same reasons.

Every single car I've ever owned cost me almost nothing in depreciation, and this really does bring a warm glow to ownership. It's great when owning madly desirable cars can be framed as being economically reasonable... and indeed this allows me to own 5 to 6 cars without my other half being able to call me unreasonable! lol :-)

2708420018

179 posts

84 months

[news] 
Thursday 12th January 2012 quote quote all
Before I retired I always ran BMW 7 series and these sufferred the expected depreciation dropping to half cost in 3 to 4 years. At the same time I always had a couple of older classic from Riley Jaguar to Gordon Keeble. All of these were sold for more than I paid and spent on them. The only exceptions on which I lost money were a couple of Ferraris.
My Continental Mulliner has probably dropped about 10k in four years but as I intend to keep it this may well reverse. What will happen to Bentley in the future is anyones guess. But if you look at Silver Shadows costing 27k new, they bottomed out at about 7-9k for a good one and have since risen to 15-20k for a good one. The only trouble is that this process will probably take a few years!!
The depreciation is a side issue to me. I buy cars because I like them and want to own and drive them. What I get when the passion wanes is not relevant at the time of acquisition. Its a bit like marriage!!

Paul

allister

16 posts

32 months

[news] 
Thursday 12th January 2012 quote quote all
Hi Paul

I agree with you that a car should ultimately be purchased for the purpose of providing pleasure, and should not be bought solely for the intention of returning a profit. The fact that you have managed to achieve a profit on several occasions with your classics is an excellent result and obviously a benefit. Also, a drop of only £10k over 4 years on your Continental Mulliner is very respectable and a figure I'd be more than happy to live with.

I think both myself and Alex's point was that their is something quite satisfying about owning desirable cars at minimal cost... It makes the whole ownership experience that little bit more satisfying.


However, maybe cost is not a factor you consider as you have an advantage over us... Alex states at the start of this thread that he is 38 years old and I myself have just turned 41, whereas you say, you are now retired so maybe we're coming at this from slightly different angles.

I suspect you probably have a few more years behind you than we do, and therefore probably a few more pounds in the bank.... I'm sure we'll catch you one day though, and when we do, maybe we too will say 'to hell with the cost'!

Allister

2708420018

179 posts

84 months

[news] 
Friday 13th January 2012 quote quote all
Hi Alister

Point taken! When I was 41 I went out and bought a brand new Lotus Elite, having kidded my wife that as it had two seats in the back it was really a family car. Having squeezed the family in on one occasion I then had to go out and buy a Citoen CX as a family car to fit them all in in comfort! However, I now had two cars and have continued the tradition ever since eventually working it up to three.

I think the slight difference with your approach in looking at a Bentley is the potential for big bills if something substantial goes wrong. Initial purchases tend to come out of capital or by some regularly funded finance whereas big bills come out of the blue and have to be funded out of income.

The plus side is that you get what you want when you want it. Go out and enjoy it.

Paul

allister

16 posts

32 months

[news] 
Tuesday 17th January 2012 quote quote all
Hi Paul

Thank you for your reply.... It is always good to hear from others who have experienced the benefits, as well as the disadvantages of owning prestige cars. Your right, the initial outlay of a car is one thing, running costs are something you can estimate for the most part, but the real unexpected bills are something which can catch you out.

The gearbox packing up on my Range Rover at a cost of exactly £4K (all but £8.00) was bad enough, although I was comfortable'ish with it. £6K is about as much as I could deal with on a single repair, anything above that would probably leave me feeling that yes, this car may have been something of a mistake! If you or anyone else thinks I should expect higher bills, and on a frequent basis with an Arnage, then please let me know as I may have to reconsider?

And I guess once again, that's what brings me back to the benefits associated with reducing depreciation, particularly for myself or others where cost is a consideration. My wife and I realise that we need to change our Range Rover as it's getting older and the mileage higher... The other option we were considering was a new Mercedes 350ML, the new model which is due for release in April 2012. But this works out around £55K for the spec we would want, albeit with the benefit of a 3 year manufacturers warranty.... That said, what will the depreciation be in years one, two and three probably quite substantial, and probably a greater figure than the depreciation and unexpected repair bills associated with a £35K Bentley Arnage.... at least I hope that will be the case because that's how I've sold it to my wife!!

As I have never owned a Bentley before, and while I do of course realise that no one has a crystal ball, I would be very interested to hear from Paul and anyone else who would like to give me their opinion on whether or not they would expect, taking all factors in to account and based on approx 10K miles per annum, a £35K Bentley Arnage to be more costly than a £55K new Mercedes 350ML or similar?

In other words, is a Bentley Arnage likely to be a far more expensive option over 3 years?

I look forward to, and appreciate any thoughts or comments that any of you may have.

Thank you

Allister

ADP68

364 posts

56 months

[news] 
Tuesday 17th January 2012 quote quote all
Instinct tells me that the Merc will be worth about £30-35 in 3 years and the Arange about £20k and if you throw in servicing etc (say £1500 for the arnage Vs £500 for the Merc) and fuel, the Merc will be the better buy, especially if you live in a snowy hill like me. However this excludes the opportunity cost of the difference in purchase price, so if you buy the arange and stick the £20k saving on the Merc purchase price into your pension, you'd be quids in with the arnage.
Of course, I'm excluding the cost / benefit of FUN, as i'm a bean-counter.
You know you want the Arnage, don't you evil

alexwagner

Original Poster:

56 posts

44 months

[news] 
Tuesday 17th January 2012 quote quote all
Allister,

The salesman who showed me the Arnage T said that they are reliable but that parts were expensive. Example: he was driving an Arnage T in Monaco when the Alternator packed up. It cost him £2500 to fix. That's the kind of thing to expect, and I'm OK with that.

An Arnage is said to cost about the same to run as a modern Ferrari, i.e. pretty reasonable so long as the engine or gearbox don't break. The 6.75L Bentley engine is pretty unstressed and the gearbox is well proven, plus they tend to be driven gently compared to sports cars. So I'd say it's a safe bet compared to a Ferrari.

I think a £35K Arnage will hardly depreciate - maybe £2K per year for 3 years, allow a generous £5K max / yr on servicing and maintenance for 10K miles / yr, and then there is a fuel and insurance differential. I haven't done the sums, but I feel a new Merc will cost quite a bit more than a used Arnage over 3 years...

People tend to be very risk averse and pay way over the odds for peace of mind. It's human nature. Also, most people simply assume that the running costs of an Arnage are absolutely bloody horrendous, when in fact they are just "high".

Also, an Arnage presents improbable value due to being fantastically un-PC and being an environmental disaster, and many many people are put off by that image. So take advantage! ;-)

ADP68

364 posts

56 months

[news] 
Tuesday 17th January 2012 quote quote all
We've arrived at the same conclusion Alex, but I think Arnage's are falling at a greater rate. I know they're not the same, but Arnage Red Labels are now in the early 20's but were 10k more just a couple of years ago. Probably because 2-3 years ago they were 'current' models and now aren't.

Balmoral Green

30,025 posts

133 months

[news] 
Tuesday 17th January 2012 quote quote all
They're also at that stage, with age/mileage, that quite a few things may need repairing/replacing, outside of just regular servicing (correct service schedule for the age/mileage or otherwise).

EG:

Injectors
Knock sensors
Exhaust manifold gaskets
Head gaskets
Turbos
AC compressor
Discs
Springs
Shockers
Hydraulics overhaul
Suspension overhaul
Steering overhaul
Water pump

Not to mention areas of rot breaking out.

Obviously tyres and brake pads are regular consumables, but much of the above can be looked at in the same way. It's cyclical. A nice enough ten year old car will be getting ready for it's first ever round of the above. Just like the previous generation Turbo R's as they entered their second decade.

I have all the history and all the bills etc for my car, from 1990, everything that's ever been done. For the first ten years, it's just regular servicing, for the next ten years though yikes

Edited by Balmoral Green on Tuesday 17th January 16:33

alexwagner

Original Poster:

56 posts

44 months

[news] 
Tuesday 17th January 2012 quote quote all
ADP68 said:
We've arrived at the same conclusion Alex, but I think Arnage's are falling at a greater rate. I know they're not the same, but Arnage Red Labels are now in the early 20's but were 10k more just a couple of years ago. Probably because 2-3 years ago they were 'current' models and now aren't.
Yep, although depreciation should largely tail off.

A well kept Arnage Red Label might have been worth £10K more a couple of yrs ago and dropped to £20K, but it's not going to drop another £10K in the next couple of yrs... It's reaching the asymptotic part of the curve, where less and value is shed each year.

The best Turbo R's command £20K and will stay at that level given sympathetic maintenance.



allister

16 posts

32 months

[news] 
Wednesday 18th January 2012 quote quote all
CRIKEY Balmoral Green, that's one hell of a list of potential faults you've got there!!! I hope I don't get all those in a 12 month period... In fact I hope I don't get them all within any kind of period!

Thank you all the same for your comments and knowledge, and the same also applies to ADP68 and Alex.... Thanks again.

I don't feel too concerned having read the content of your contributions. I know the fuel and service costs will be greater than that of a Mercedes ML and I have allowed for that. I think that Alex has a valid point re: depreciation on a new car.... They do drop like a stone, although as someone else also mentioned, I also think that the depreciation on an Arnage T could be slightly greater than suggested.

Another factor for me to also consider, is what would I rather be driving..... A new M Class which I'm sure will be good but will also probably drive like countless other new cars, or a Bentley, something that feels special every time I get in it!!

Your comments have given me an indication on repair and maintenance costs, which I feel I can live with... You're not all advising me that I should be allocating 10K+ for a typical years repairs alone, so I'm OK with that.

I do have just one more question though that I would like your opinions on (and please bare with me on this)....

I currently live in Surrey, although I'm originally from Yorkshire which is where our warehouse and business premises operate from. Because of this, come the Spring my wife and I will be moving home and relocating to Manchester. Up until the last service on my current car (Range Rover) it has always been serviced by Land Rover. However, my family in Yorkshire use an EXCELLENT mechanic who I recently used to carry out the last Inspection 2 (big one) on my Range Rover and he charged me just £70!!! Yes ladies and gentlemen, I supplied the parts and oil but just £70 was the labour cost for a big service on a Range Rover!

He has also carried out extensive work over the last 18 months on my brothers Porsche 997 Targa with great success, as well as completely rebuilding the engine in a VW Passat I had about 6 years ago, this drove better than ever following the rebuild!!

As I will be able to take advantage of his services following our move North, my question to you all is this... Would any of you trust your Bentley to an accomplished mechanic to replace parts such as an alternator, or brake disk / pads etc? Or are they a strictly specialist / main dealer cars?

I do of course realise that this will effect resale, not having a full main dealer / specialist history but to be honest, if I buy one I'll probably take good care of it, run it up to 120K and then garage it, rather than sell it on.

So in simple terms, (and of course with the exception of electrical faults) can a good accomplished mechanic deal with a Bentley, or is an Arnage, (as I'm sure main dealers like to suggest), far too much of a complex beast.

Allister

alexwagner

Original Poster:

56 posts

44 months

[news] 
Wednesday 18th January 2012 quote quote all
In your position I would do the scheduled services with a specialist and all other interventions (unscheduled repairs) with your cheap competent chap. That way you get a bit of the best of both worlds. I have often bought cars with the intention of keeping them forever, yet circumstances do change, so service history is a factor...

2708420018

179 posts

84 months

[news] 
Wednesday 18th January 2012 quote quote all
alexwagner said:
In your position I would do the scheduled services with a specialist and all other interventions (unscheduled repairs) with your cheap competent chap. That way you get a bit of the best of both worlds. I have often bought cars with the intention of keeping them forever, yet circumstances do change, so service history is a factor...
Very sound advice and exactly what I do. At the last scheduled service the dealer identified a sheared bolt on the wiper motor and put along side " New Wiper Motor £634 + Vat + fitting". My man who does the other stuff drilled out the old one and put in a new one bill £20.

A fully up todate service record is of great importance when selling and a factor in depreciation. For the more modern stuff some of the internet sites will give you a clue or a friendly dealer with back issues of the guides. I doubt if the Arnage has yet bottomed out so it will depreciate how much is a guess but almost certainly not as much as a £55k Merc.
Beware of the otiginal cost trap if using it as a business car as the benefit is calculated on the original list price and not the current buying price. Also always use HP not pure leasing as you get the full deprciation for tax eventually.
As you can see I too am a bean counter even if retired.


Paul
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