The 2009 Bentley Azure convertible is what Bentleys used to be. There aren’t any newfangled VW-sourced W12 engines here; rather, the Azure is a rolling time warp back to when the Brits owned their own car companies and did things their way. In those days, “land yacht” wasn’t an epithet to the folks at Bentley — it was a benchmark. Perhaps that’s why the Azure is 18 feet long and has the aerodynamics of a cardboard box. It also has room for four adults, and it’s powered by a 6.75-liter twin-turbocharged V8 that has been in service in one form or another since 1959. Just don’t ask how much it costs. Chances are your house was cheaper than this opulent open-roof cruiser.
Beyond its imposing exterior, the Azure’s calling card is its cosseting cabin. Generous helpings of burl walnut and soft leather make this an interior fit for royalty, or at least for those who elect not to buy a Drophead Coupe. The Azure lacks the Rolls-Royce’s rear suicide doors, though, so ingress and egress are less than dignified for backseat occupants. Expect further frustration when trying to operate the unfriendly and unattractive audio and navigation controls. Fortunately, you can always power back the Azure’s enormous fabric roof and appreciate that beautiful Beverly Hills sunshine.
The 2009 Bentley Azure is a four-seat, soft-top convertible offered in a single trim level. Standard features include a power-operated cloth top, 19-inch wheels, xenon headlights, power-adjustable front seats, a power tilt-only steering wheel, driver memory functions, tri-zone climate control, a six-disc CD changer, a DVD navigation system and front and rear parking sensors.
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