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  • Chris Chilton is now friends with Ruben Mellaerts
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  • James Walshe is now friends with Chris Chilton
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  • Adam Towler is now friends with Chris Chilton
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  • Chris Chilton is now following Ruben Mellaerts
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  •   Daniel 1982 reacted to this post about 1 year ago
    2005 Bentley Continental GT £27,495 Modern Classics For Sale Sampled

    Having covered little more than 6000 miles per year, this Bentley is in fine fettle and ready to conquer motorways. Nathan Chadwick.

    SPECIFICATIONS #2005 #Bentley-Continental-GT / #Bentley-Continental / #Bentley / #Bentley-Continental-GT-MkI /
    Engine 5998cc/ #W12 /DOHC
    Power [email protected]
    Torque 479lb [email protected]
    Maximum speed 199mph
    0-60mph 4.7sec
    Mileage 61,000
    Transmission AWD, six-speed auto #ZF6HP / #ZF / #ZF-6HP26A /
    On sale at ASM Performance

    The Bentley Continental GT sits in the either/or camp, in a similar fashion to more obscure oddities such as the Alfa Romeo SZ – you either love or hate 'em. Unlike the Italian stallion, for everyone who hates the Bentley there are probably two who love them, which means that Bentley have sold a shedload. As a consequence, not every car is as well loved as Bentleys of old have been.

    No fear here, however – this model's 61,000 miles may seem high for a prestige vehicle but the deep green/grey paintwork is in great overall condition. There are a few stone chips across the Bentley's broad face, with only very minor imperfections elsewhere.

    The of side wheels have a small amount of kerbing damage, but the 275/40 R19 Pirelli P Zeros have a good level of tread left on them.

    The service history, up to October 2013 and 56,420 miles, points to main dealer and specialist care and attention. The Continental will be serviced prior to sale.

    Under the bonnet, the tightly packed engine bay looks clean, with all the fluids at the right level and the oil is a desirable rich brown colour.

    The black leather interior is in fantastic condition, with the only signs of wear to the driver's-side bolster. The wooden inlays are free from scratches, though – and we're really nit-picking here – the start button is missing some of its typography and the circular badge on top of the gearlever came of. Otherwise it's hard to fault this interior, considering the mileage.

    Time to start driving, and with a low, refined waaargh noise the 6.0-litre W12 fires up on the button. The steering feels suitably hefty yet easy to manoeuvre, and on rougher surfaces the suspension performs quietly and efficiently.

    The gearbox was equally well behaved, with no undue hesitation or peculiar sounds when working through the gears. The brakes bring the car to a halt quickly and predictably and the CGT raises and lowers its air suspension without any untoward drama.

    Even if you're one of those who hates the Continental GT it's worth trying one anyway. There's truly epic amounts of traction and eyebrow-squishing acceleration. It's no Lotus Elise but this is much more comfortable, and faster too. For the amount of performance and luxury on offer, the Continental has to represent a bit of a bargain at less than £30k. This one is in great overall condition, and aside from a few minor exterior niggles, could easily be a brand-new car.

    Only minor marks spoil an otherwise excellent place to spend a weekend in Sport mode – and simply hold on.

    PRICE WHEN NEW (2005 UK) £124,805


    Unveiled at Geneva Motor Show in 2003, the CGT is offered with six body colours and eight hide colours. Bentley updates the GT in 2004 with more trim options. Mulliner Driving Specification option from same year includes 20-inch alloy wheels and upgrades to interior. Continental GT goes on a diet in 2007, shedding 35kg. GT Speed model launches the same year increases power to 602bhp and uprated suspension.

    Zagato-bodied special called the GTZ launches in 2008. Series 51 models of 2009 adds a plethora of trim options. Supersports released in 2009. Thanks to 621bhp and 590lb ft of torque, it can hit 204mph and reach 60mph in 3.7 seconds. Gearshifts are 50% quicker than standard GT's.
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  •   Roy Craig reacted to this post about 2 years ago
    UNDER THE RADAR / #Audi-A2 / #Audi /

    Chris Chilton's favourite hidden gems

    It may not win many traffic light drag races but it'll draw more interested glances than most supercars.

    COST NEW £16,530 / VALUE NOW £1500

    AUDI A2 Small, slow and expensive when new. So why does Chris Chilton believe Audi's revolutionary supermini is worth a punt?

    You won’t find many superminis in the pages of Modern Classics. With a few exceptions, tepid small cars from the 1990s and 2000s are generally cheap and cheerless. When tastier stuff from the era costs so little, why shell out for something smaller and slower?

    The A2 might change your mind. Introduced in 2000, when Volkswagen was already in thrall to platform-sharing, this Bauhaus jewel was one of only two in the stable during that decade to enjoy its own unique chassis. The other? The Bugatti Veyron.

    More astonishingly, the A2 was built around an aluminium spaceframe, a technology that today is still limited to a handful of expensive cars.

    OK, so there’s no S or RS version, which might put of some of you. Most had a 75bhp 1.4 petrol that ambled to 62mph in 12 seconds, or a 1.4 diesel with the same power and drag strip muscle. The TDI sounds more tempting when you remember its torque and economy figures are 50% better than the petrols. Sixty mpg and £30 tax? That's not bad, even today.

    But the #Audi-A2-1.4-TDI might as well be a Hemi Charger compared with the space-age #Audi-A2-TDi-3L . Fitted with a tiny 1.2 diesel motor, plus wind-cheating covers over skinny magnesium wheels, aluminium suspension components and thinner glass, it was capable of 94mpg, or 3L/100km, hence the name. It was never sold in the UK, but since performance was as glacial as the ice caps it was designed to save, we didn’t really miss out.

    If you want something approaching hot hatch fun, you need the 110bhp #Audi-A2-1.6-FSi . That might not sound like much in the way of poke, but because the A2 weighs less than 1000kg, it does 0-62mph in 9.8 sec and up to 47mpg. The ride is on the firm side, particularly on cars with the gorgeous TT-style 17in rims, but the handling is tidy, the gearshift tight and there’s real room for four.

    Unfortunately the high cost of building that aluminium chassis, plus the high retail price meant this supermini didn’t just feel like a big car – it was priced like one too. Buyers not yet used to the modern concept of a premium small car were nonplussed. Audi produced just 176,000 over its five-year life, finally pulling the plug in 2005. Those happy to spend big headed to Audi’s arch rival. BMW’s Oxford plant was pumping out that many retro MINIs every year.

    But 15 years on, an A2 trumps both the MINI and the current A1 supermini on every front, from design to technical innovation and plain old cool factor. It’s also about a tenth of the price. If you’re after a sharp-looking car for little money, £1500 doesn’t buy better.

    What To Love – and To Fear

    + It still looks cutting-edge more than a decade after the last one was built. It's frugal, too.

    - It's not exactly quick – a sloth with asthma is likely to accelerate faster.
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  •   Malcolm Thorne reacted to this post about 4 years ago

    It was the first Japanese car to be built in Europe. It was the last Triumph car to be built. But was the Acclaim worthy of its name? #Triumph-Acclaim / #Triumph / #1981

    The Triumph Acclaim proved that us Brits could certainly build a reliable car.

    The Acclaim, based on the Ballade, was the first fruit of a 1979 deal struck with Honda by British Leyland boss Sir Michael Edwardes. BL achieved a double-whammy: an easy, development-cost-free insertion into the model range, and a sidestep of the Japanese import restriction.

    The Acclaim's rounded-of square headlamps paid accidental homage to the old Herald, while the swerve of its bonnet over the headlamps gave a nod to the 13/60. The engine was a light alloy, 1335cc, twin Keihin-carbed SOHC transverse four driving the front wheels. It made 70bhp at 5750rpm and 74lb ft of torque at 3500rpm. The standard transmission was a five-speed overdrive unit. If you enjoyed the occasional nap behind the wheel, you could order your Acclaim with a two-speed Hondamatic auto, daintily renamed the Triomatic. The cabin was a sickly mélange of Caramac plastic and beige velour, but at least there was no shortage of equipment.

    An Autocar vox pop revealed that 55% of us didn’t regard the Acclaim as British, but it wasn’t an issue: UK motorists were ready to embrace something that promised reliable ongoing movement. Housewife of Middlewich was well informed, pointing out that her Cortina came from Germany, 'so what’s the difference?' Quite so.

    In 1981 Autocar’s Michael Scarlett had a pre-test squirt in the top-spec Acclaim CD. He liked the zesty feel and sound of the 1300 engine, though he did point out that a low-speed flat spot in his car occasionally grew into a full-blown cutout when tackling steep hills in a high gear. That was more of an indication the Acclaim was very much Japanese and a bit short on the torquey chuggability expected of a British car.

    Overall, Autocar rated the Acclaim as 'fast, comfortable, economical and a good replacement for the Dolomite'. It also predicted good reliability, which turned out to be correct. The Acclaim’s title of ‘fewest warranty claims for a BL car’ was perhaps only slightly more impressive than ‘least embarrassing reality TV show personality’.

    The magazine's only qualm was the Acclaim's ability to weather the storm of imports when the import restriction was lifted. That turned out to be a fair shout – the Acclaim sank in 1984 after three years, taking the Triumph name with it.

    The model to hunt down is the rare Avon Turbo. It featured special duotone paint, a vinyl roof, colour-coded wheels, Turbo written in big letters down the side and about four acres of stuck-on black plastic.

    Frankly it was a mess, and the suspension mods didn’t really work either. But the Turbo Technics unit did boost power to a lag-free 105bhp, bringing the 0-60 time down from 12.9sec to 9.6sec. Unfortunately, the conversion cost £2990, so few were built. In 2010, the 001 press car (VWK 689X) was put on sale. It was advertised at offers over £10k, to much guffawing from Triumph Owners’ Club members. It made it, too… The last laugh wasn’t theirs, though, or even Honda’s: it was the British motor industry’s, reborn on a new foundation of trust established by the Acclaim.
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  •   Dan Furr reacted to this post about 4 years ago
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