Jimmy Palmer’s

Classic Driver - - HOLMAN -

car says a lot about Jimmy Palmer the man these days. It’s a brand new white Bent­ley Con­ti­nen­tal 4-litre GT and he didn’t men­tion it all dur­ing lunch. It wasn’t un­til we went out to the Brewer’s car park that the el­e­gant white GT was to be seen parked qui­etly in a cor­ner.

Now if that had been me, I’d have ar­rived in the bar and in­vited ev­ery­one to come and look at my cool new car. But maybe that’s why I haven’t got a new Bent­ley and Jimmy Palmer does. That, and how­ever much it costs to buy one!

If a 500-horse­power 8-speed auto coupe can look sleek as well as speedy, this one does it. I’ve al­ways pre­ferred Bent­leys to Rolls-Royces, but as al­ready men­tioned, I’ve never been in a fi­nan­cial po­si­tion to ex­er­cise my pref­er­ence.

Bent­leys have been look­ing stun­ning since the first vin­tage model in the 1920s. The mod­ern sales brochure still fans wealthy enthusiasm: “Through­out his­tory, there have been great mo­ments when a Bent­ley has al­tered our un­der­stand­ing of great mo­tor­ing.” Hear, hear.

Back in the early ’70s in Sur­rey I came within 5000 quid of own­ing a sleek 1950s sec­ond-hand Con­ti­nen­tal that was be­ing sold on the road­side in one of our wealthy Sur­rey sub­urbs for less than £20,000. But it didn’t hap­pen. Per­haps it was just as well.

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