Why The First Edition Is The Perfect Bentley Bentayga

Opinion / Comments

The package includes some great features.

Bentley has a habit of introducing new or updated models with special First Editions. When the latest Bentayga arrived a few years ago with some significant upgrades, the First Edition badge reared its pretty head once more. Currently available for the 2022 Bentley Bentayga V8, the First Edition Package essentially serves as a "best hits bundle" to aid customers with the overwhelming process of speccing out a Bentley vehicle.

CarBuzz recently had the opportunity to drive a Bentayga V8 equipped with this package, giving us time to think about how we'd option ours if given the chance. As it turns out, Bentley has pretty much created the perfect Bentayga with the First Edition package.

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First Edition Package Goodies

Bentley's options list can take hours to comb through. But why bother? The First Edition Package bundles the most crucial features into one easy-to-digest group. This specification adds Bentley Dynamic Ride to counteract body roll, deep pile floormats, contrast seat stitching, embroidered First Edition emblems, illuminated kickplates, LED welcome lamps, mood lighting, a 20-speaker Naim audio system with 1,780 watts, and special badges to denote the First Edition.

Also included are the Mulliner Driving and Touring Specifications. The Mulliner Specification is what we'd consider an opulence package, adding 21-inch or 22-inch wheels, twin-stitched diamond quilting, sports pedals, and special oil and gas caps.

The Touring package focuses on technology and safety with adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, traffic assist, night vision, and a head-up display. These are all must-have options on any Bentayga that most customers opt for anyway.

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The Value Proposition

A Bentayga V8 starts at $187,600, and the First Edition adds $42,855. With no other options added, a Bentayga First Edition would cost $230,455. By comparison, the sportier Bentayga S costs $219,800, and the W12-powered Bentayga Speed costs $254,800.

As the First Edition package is only available on the V8, buyers would have to add the First Edition Package's contents to the Bentayga S and Bentayga Speed, upping the price considerably. Some of the features include the Bentley Dynamic Ride ($5,420), contrast stitching ($2,630), Mulliner Driving Specification ($9,690) Touring Specification ($8,640), and Naim audio ($8,970).

If you were to add up the individual items in the package, it would total $43,565, resulting in $710 of savings. It's not much, but if you planned to get these options anyway, the First Edition makes sense. Plus, there's no other way to get the unique First Edition badges. Factoring in an additional $43,000 into the Bentayga S and Bentayga Speed, the V8 is still the most affordable option.

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What You Give Up

Bentley only offers the First Edition Specification in the United States, which rules out some potential customers. And although we like what comes in this package, it locks you into the standard V8 engine. This is far from a hardship, though, considering the Bentayga's 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 dishes out 542 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque, enough to hit 60 mph in 4.4 seconds go on to a 180 mph top speed. First Edition owners can't select the more powerful W12-powered Bentayga Speed, the mid-tier Bentayga S, or the relatively more fuel-efficient Bentayga Hybrid.

Though we've never driven the Bentayga with the 626-hp W12, we sampled this drivetrain in the Flying Spur sedan. Compared to the V8, the W12 offers far more torque (664 lb-ft), making it more effortless to execute high-speed passing maneuvers. The V8 never feels underpowered, however, and as the short video demonstrates it is a very fun SUV to drive at the limit.

If world-ending speed isn't as important, the V8 is more than substantial and even emits a nicer growl than the W12. But if you must have the twelve-cylinder engine, it's easy to get close to the First Edition with options, excluding the special badges.

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Other Important Options

After deciding on which Bentayga variant to buy and whether or not to get the First Edition, there are still many decisions to make. Assuming you opted for the First Edition, here are the other important options we suggest checking the box for. Color is pretty subjective but we'd highly recommend the Midnight Emerald shade from our test vehicle, a new Bentayga option. Bentley describes this hue as a "sophisticated, metallic, mid-tone green with a subtle blue tone." This is a truly spectacular color, appearing almost black until the sun shines when the glorious shade of green pops out.

Once you've selected an exterior color, it's time to focus on the cabin. There are no fewer than 14 hide colors and 10 veneers, not counting any special order Mulliner options. Our tester came with Beluga hide with a carbon fiber veneer. Bentley is known for its incredible wood veneers, but the carbon and black combo worked beautifully together.

Finally, Bentley offers the Bentayga with four, five, and seven-seat configurations. The four-seat option is the most luxurious and befitting of a Bentley with powered captain's chairs, a handy center console, and a quilted backboard to divide the cabin from the trunk.

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