2013 Bentley Azure Convertible - FROM $
The first Bentley convertible designed under the company's Volkswagen ownership, the 2013 Bentley Azure promises to continue the model's legacy of rarefied open-top motoring.
What's New for 2013
The Bentley Azure returns for 2013 after a brief absence.
After a three-year hiatus, look for a return of the Bentley Azure in 2013. The big convertible has been a mainstay of the Bentley lineup since the mid-1990s, when it was based on the old Arnage sedan. The 2013 Bentley Azure will be a shorter, two-door drop-top version of the new Bentley Mulsanne sedan.
Short of Bentley customers complaining en masse about the engine's EPA-rated fuel efficiency of 13 mpg combined, we expect the Azure to retain the same burly, twin-turbo 6.8-liter V8 found in the Mulsanne. We're betting that once they get a taste of open-air motoring underscored by 505 horsepower and 752 pound-feet of torque, they won't protest about the frequency of gas stops. By the way, the brutish power output should push this tribute to material wealth up to 60 mph in a bit more than 5 seconds. We also expect the Azure to come with the Mulsanne's eight-speed automatic transmission.
Like the Mulsanne, the 2013 Bentley Azure will likely ride on an all-steel chassis (not much aluminum here) with air suspension at all four corners. In Edmunds testing, we found the new Bentley Mulsanne demonstrates more body control in corners at higher speeds than the former Arnage, and we figure the Azure's shorter wheelbase should give it even better agility. Its roofless construction will allow the chassis to flex more, so maybe we'll call it a dynamic wash. Small matter, since the Bentley Azure is meant to be a highway express of the open-top luxury kind.
The 2013 Bentley Azure is expected to go on sale in the fall of 2012. Check back for more information, including pricing and driving impressions, once we get closer to that date.