Back in 1952, the Bentley R-Type Continental was the fastest four-seat car of its ilk, something that is still true of the outgoing Continental Supersports. The 1952 model also had one of the most elegant body designs, built by the then coachbuilder, HJ Mulliner and Co, an outfit that is still affiliated with the British car maker. With its classic and fluidic sculpture, the R-Type remains the precursor to the first generation Bentley Continental GT that was launched back in 2003 following Volkswagen’s (VW’s) acquisition of the British brand in 1998. While it had a five-year gestation period, it is arguably the quintessential model that once again placed the modern day Bentley back on the map as it was built on VW’s Phaeton luxury saloon platform with which it shared a great deal, including similar appointments and its 6.0l W12 engine. That engine is still an integral element of the Bentley brand having since done duties in the Flying Spur saloon and, more recently, the Bentayga SUV...

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