Top-Shelf Sedan: 1992 Bentley Turbo R

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When we consider the potential risk of buying a formerly expensive luxury car to use as a means of daily transport, there’s a mild tinge of excitement from wondering if you could pull it off. You know, could you be one of the lucky ones that drive an exotic dream car on your commute without the thing completely failing on you in dramatic fashion? It’s likely misguided optimism because driving a formerly high-end car like any other daily driver is a recipe for disaster, but it sure is tempting to try from time to time. This 1992 Bentley Turbo R is a long-wheelbase model listed here on craigslist for $15,900 on Long Island.

Thanks to Barn Finds reader Pat L. for the find. The Turbo R was a significant car for Bentley and the car community at large. The menacing sedan was not only pure Bentley in terms of the acres of burlwood trim, thick carpeting, and leather seating surfaces, but it was also a surprisingly good driver as Bentley paid a fair amount of attention to the suspension tuning in order to put the thrust of the turbocharged 6.75 liter V8 to good work. Automatic ride control, four-wheel disc brakes, and a true dual exhaust system round out just some of the ways this was a legitimate performance car wearing extremely understated clothing.

Of course, you might say the primary reason for commuting in a Bentley is to enjoy the high-grade interior accommodations, and you wouldn’t be wrong. That’s perhaps the most attractive feature of this example, which has survived in fairly incredible condition despite racking up close to 80,000 miles. In this instance, I love the fact that this Bentley has real miles on it. When you combine the higher miles (than most Bentleys) with the impressive cosmetic condition, this tells me that the previous owner actually used this car while keeping up with the regular beauty treatments. You hate to see vintage cars and trucks left to sit for months at a time, at that leads to more reliability issues than a vehicle that was actually driven.

The seller discloses that it has a slow driver’s side window but that it’s also the only known issue at the moment. If that’s an accurate read on how tight this Turbo R still is, this seems like a very solid buy at the current asking price. Of course, sellers are typically overly optimistic about their car’s mechanical health, but if there is a paper trail of any kind that shows consistent maintenance and servicing over the years, this Bentley could be a heck of a buy for someone with a short commute and a seasoned British car mechanic in their Rolodex.

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  1. Nevada1/2rack NevadahalfrackMember

    “… this Bentley could be a heck of a buy for someone with a short commute and a seasoned British car mechanic in their Rolodex.”
    The seasoned British car mechanic in their Rolodex will probably be wearing at least an Oyster Rolex..
    For its time, fast with class; for a slightly lower price it’d be a nice DD if you can afford the upkeep.

    Like 10

      Not a Rolex, Breitling.

      Like 1
  2. Nevada1/2rack NevadahalfrackMember

    BTW, is there a Calverton/Long Island in Wyoming? Asking for a friend who noticed the license plates..

    Like 9
    • David Frank DavidMember

      22 is Park County, home of Jackson Hole Wyoming. In the last few decades it’s become home to some ultra rich folks or at least one of their homes. You aren’t surprised to see “going to town” rigs like these around town as well as their jets out at the Jackson Hole Airport. This old Rolls must have picked up some miles commuting ‘tween Jackson and one of their houses. You never saw rigs like this come winter when you’re out pushing snow so this old Brit might have led a pretty easy life overall.

      Like 5
      • Yblocker

        No, 22 is Teton County. And the billionaires have chased out the millionaires.

        Like 8
  3. angliagt angliagtMember

    Yeah,it’s right next to Oceanside,Wyoming.

    Like 7
    • Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TNMember

      If I recall, county 22 would be Teton County, home of Jackson Hole.

      Like 6
      • Nevada1/2rack NevadahalfrackMember

        That would explain a lot-unfortunately Jackson Hole has become the Birkenstock Yuppieville of Wyoming.

        Like 5
      • Yblocker

        That’s right, the californicated county.

        Like 9
    • Nevada1/2rack NevadahalfrackMember

      Hmmm.. sounds like the makings of a country western song!

      Like 2
  4. Frank Sumatra

    C4 Corvette money. Buy American and you don’t have to worry about running out of Grey Poupon.

    Like 10
  5. U.K. Paul

    These are stunning cars. Back in the day when I was a teenager a friends father sent his driver to pick me up in one of these and I fell in love with Bentleys.

    30+ years later I still remember that experience. No car since has had more impact.

    Like 17
  6. Hjon

    Wyoming provides tax advantages to LLC’s, Corps. and Foundations. That may explain the registration.
    Just a thought.

    Like 0
  7. Slomoogee

    If you can verify the maintenance and service done on time and have a Bentley technician do a PPI, then yes. With the hassle of flying, why not get in this and take advantage of our interstates?

    Like 5
    • Frank Sumatra

      Because you have a much higher chance of dying on one of our wonderful Interstates than you do in a Commercial Airliner. Full disclosure- My son is a 777 pilot for one of the airlines that did not leave thousands stranded recently.

      Like 6
      • Slomoogee

        Some people actually enjoy driving and prefer the view you get out of a Bentley while sitting in a infinitely adjustable leather seat. To me it’s preferable to a cramped window seat at 35000 feet in a flying Petri dish. Guess I’m just prone to risky behavior.

        Like 35

        I love driving – and have covered the US and Canada in my ’04 350Z Touring Roadster with 6-speed manual … some of us Boomers still enjoy the wind in the hair at 145 mph when we can …

        Like 0
  8. Mitch

    Agreeable tip as the latest SZ cars represent refined technique
    residing still in the classic shell. BMW and VW could not
    tie up to the build quality Vickers provided as the original owner
    of both brands.
    The early Arnage or Silver Seraph are plagued from chipping
    off woodgrain and some models with the misfitted 4.4 engine
    from BMW. This cars are junk. spoken from a 96 Brooklands

    Like 5
    • Big C

      Say what?

      Like 5
      • BCB42

        “The treadles gone off the widget!”

        Like 1
  9. TheOldRanger

    LOL at all the comments above. In my case, this is one of those cars I can admire from a distance, maybe even up close without touching it. I don’t know about other states, but the insurance on this one would be high. Trying to find a mechanic would be a nightmare where I live. Pretty expensive as a yard “ornament”… yet it is a classy looking vehicle. I suppose I could park it in my driveway and honk at other drivers as they go by !!

    Like 7
    • U.K. Paul

      I would be surprised if the insurance costs were to exceed $600 a year here in the U.K.
      Surely qualifies as a classic/collectors car there too?

      Like 3
      • Nevada1/2rack NevadahalfrackMember

        It does qualify as a classic car here in Nevada, but the politicians here came to realize that there are more than a few 25+year old cars still be driven daily out our way and decided to penalize them for getting a break on registration fees: they passed a law requiring proof that it 1)have an annual smog check 2) has insurance designating it as an antique 3) it isn’t driven more than 5000 miles a year, a figure that a weeklong vacation here traveling around the state could rack up.
        Anything for a buck, one would say.

        Like 4
  10. Phil Bates

    I used to live near Jackson, WY, and get there frequently. Chances are that if someone there owned this car, it was well cared for. I wonder if I would know the person.

    Like 3
    • angliagt angliagtMember

      But I doubt there’s a RR/Bentley dealer there,
      or a competent shop to work on them.

      And again,why don’t sellers like this register
      them in their own state?This is more than likely in
      the last owner’s name,so some other problems
      could surface.

      Like 1
      • Chuck Dickinson

        Wyoming may have much lower registration and insurance costs than NY, so they register it to a home in WY.

        Like 2
  11. KurtMember

    Very tempting but I would be terrified to do any simple maintenance myself, let alone a major overhaul. This ad reminds me of all the ads on here for other British cars. Gorgeous and low prices but unless I knew how to fix them, I’ll pass.

    Like 5
    • Colin Smeltzer

      They are just nuts and bolts, just like every other car.

      Like 4
  12. Fogline

    “When we consider the potential risk of buying a formerly expensive luxury car to use as a means of daily transport, there’s a mild tinge of excitement from wondering if you could pull it off. ” Exactly my thinking every time I see one of these listed on here. So funny.

    Can I?

    Should I?

    Then I hear my father’s voice in my head and slowly…. ever so slowly… back away.

    One day, I am sure…..

    Like 4
  13. sonnyMember

    I recently won a 1988 Bentley on PCarMarket auction site for $4250. The problem was that it was “no reserve” with the very poor backing of the principals of PCar. They ” only align the buyer with the seller” and have no further responsibility!!!!The seller refused to sell at such a low price, and I ended up without the car with the privilege of suing in court at my cost.
    The Bentleys of this era, as evidenced in You Tubes ” Hoovie” with the Car Wizard are very difficult to work on and have continual problems. The injection system as well as the suspension can get very expensive to repair and many times, fail rapidly.
    For these reasons, I am passing! Good luck to the buyer! PEACE!

    Like 3
  14. Howie

    Excuse me, would you have any Grey Poupon?

    Like 4
  15. Bob “THE ICEMAN”

    I agree with comments concerning expensive luxury cars and subscribe, based on first hand knowledge, if the buyer cannot afford regular maintenance & upkeep, do not purchase the car. Rolls Royce & Bentley cars are wonderful machines, past history about them focused on rock solid reliability. For years comments like: “at 100,000 miles the owner is just breaking them in”. When I was a teenager my mom always commented that Rolls & Bentley were warranted for life. Was that true? If so did that feature end when BLMC’s short term of cooperate ownership cause such a shift in Warrantee coverage.

    Like 2
  16. GitterDunn

    A car like this would be better as a 2nd or 3rd car, to be be driven on leisurely outings in the countryside, sightseeing excursions, etc., than as a “daily driver” for your commute to work (unless you’re an aerospace CEO, and have a chauffeur). The miles are relatively low, and it looks really good for 31 years old. It’s well priced, particularly given that the only known issue is a problem with the drivers side window: “the window goes down, but it needs some help going up.” – not a major challenge.

    Like 3
  17. Art

    Sure, you could let it go through life with merely an occasional dusting from a fine diaper. OR, merc portals and 35s. driving lights and a roof rack.

    Like 1
  18. P Wentzell

    I had a 1968 Silver Shadow, insured through Haggerty. Not a huge demand for those cars as they come cheap (upkeep is another matter). But I was able to insure the car for $200.00 – a YEAR. I am sure this one would be a bit more, though.

    Like 3
  19. U.K. Paul

    I was curious. Checked with my insurer and it was £228 a year full coverage.

    Like 3
  20. John E. Klintz

    I would LOVE to have this car (or one like it) for about a week just to surprise the kids in their flatulent Hondas at the stoplight “grand prix.”

    Like 5
  21. GitterDunn

    I believe that the insurance actuaries consider RR/Bentley drivers, who are mainly in the 45+ age category, to be “low-risk”. The cars tend not to be their primary vehicles, and are driven sparingly and carefully.

    Like 3
  22. Peter K

    A friend of mine has one of these and he can attest that they are true cancer buckets

    Like 0
  23. Tom

    Love the “Flying Petri Dish” comment from Slomogee. My thoughts on this Brit? Dive it with respect and do my best to keep it up where I could afford to. If the motor or transmission took a crap, there’s plenty of qualifying American power plants out there that would suffice as a replacement. There is a strong history of British cars with the heartbeat of America pushing them around…

    Like 2
    • U.K. Paul

      The engines are superbly engineered.
      Some electrics maybe a risk but it’s basic design.
      The gearboxes may be American anyway. I need to check that.

      Like 2
      • Brad

        My 1998 Jaguar XJR Supercharged 4 Lt. V8 was built by Ford who owned them from 1997 to 2003, apparently the quality went up when Ford bought the company and they also stopped using Lucas electrics, we all know how good they were. People shy away from exotics like this because they think they are expensive to maintain but they’re no different to a late model Caddy or Lincoln or whatever these days, complicated as all hell and nothing you can do if it decides to chuck a hissy fit. Most problems with the modern cars seem to be some censor or electronic gismo more than actual mechanical wear and tear components that make strange noises or hiccup before they throw in the towel. Regular maintainence won’t stop stuff from wearing out, it’s usually just an oil and filter change, check fluid levels, check brake wear and grease the door locks, so that rules that out of the equation!
        Meanwhile I’ll keep enjoying my Jaguar before I get too old, the one with the Mercedes Benz transmission and rear end ???

        Like 1
  24. stevee

    Don’t sell local mechanics short. Grew up in a small town, Oregon coast. One couple had a 1962 Chrysler Ghia, a Dual Ghia (both Chrysler powered), 1958 Jaguar XK 150, Rolls Royce Convertible and a Volvo wagon. Ralph, the owner of the Flying A gas station was the only person that they allowed to work on any of them. Deliberate and thoughtful. I have fallen short, but he was a mentor.

    Like 7
  25. Jon

    Upkeep may be an issue.
    However I might bite.
    If engine starts actions up then LS swap.
    This might be an option

    Like 0
    • Jon

      Sorry typo

      If engine starts acting up then LS swap

      Like 0
    • Yblocker

      LS, Schmell S

      Like 1
  26. G Lo

    It’s a nice looking car except for the very unfortunate window tinting. Completely ruins it for me.

    Like 0
  27. Richard

    This one looks really nice but Bentleys of this era are notoriously expensive to keep on the road. Buyer beware, even if you’re handy with a wrench.

    Like 1
  28. TheOldRanger

    This story is about a Rolls. I was teaching in a town of about 35000 close to the Texas Gulf Coast a lot of years ago. A rancher I met looked like he could barely afford a decent meal, but he had “lotsa” money. He purchased his Rolls in Houston, but his ranch was about 100 miles west and he was driving close to the King’s Ranch when his Rolls just stopped. He knew the area, and walked the 2 miles to get to a gas station. He used the phone to call the Rolls dealer in Houston (he had the “card” given to him by Rolls in case of any problems). He described where he was and they told him to sit tight, and they would get service to him. He had nothing to do for about 3 hours except sit at the station (nothing around). A small plane buzzed by the station, then landed on the road (very few cars in that area) and taxied to the station. A mechanic got out to see if the car that was 2 miles away was his (it was) and he told him to sit tight. The plane taxied to the car, the mechanic spent an hour working on it, drove it to the station, climbed back into the plane, and flew off. My friend finished his trip to the King’s Ranch, returned to his home base, and was waiting for a bill. After a couple of months, still no bill, so he called the number on the card, and the answer he got was “sir, RR do not break down”… so he knew no bill was forthcoming. True story.

    Like 4
    • BJ

      Rolls Royces don’t break down they just ‘fail to proceed’, didn’t you know that?

      Like 6
  29. John

    Learn from the best on a good tax strategy, garage in New York, register in Wyoming…

    Like 2
  30. Ward William

    After seeing Tyler Hoover and The Car Wizard’s exploits working on one of these, all I can say is run forest run and don’t stop until someone else has bought it. And then run some more just to be sure. Then slam your head into a wall to ensure you get amnesia and keep doing it until you no longer know what a 1990s to 2010 Bentley even looks like. Bentleys should be driven straight to the crusher when the original owner no longer wants keep throwing the GDP of small country at them.

    Like 1
    • Yblocker

      Are they really that bad? I always thought the Bentley was the “poor man’s” Rolls-Royce.

      Like 0
      • Richard

        Yblocker- they’re really that bad. Incredibly and unnecessarily complicated. Small example from the late seventies era. The headlight switch on a Rolls contained 257 individual parts. Ford from the same era, 7 parts. The brake systems are just crazy and prone to failure of terribly expensive components. I saw the open dash of this era Bentley. There was such a birds nest of wiring, there was no place to begin. They spare no expensive to the point of ridiculousness, sheepskin floor mats for example and something like forty coats of hand rubbed lacquer on the wood. Look at it wrong and it chips off. Incidentally, they used to keep veneer off the same tree in stock at the factory. Should your card have a failure, the replacement matches exactly. I don’t know about now, but the Bentley was just a rebadged Rolls for those who wished for a more understated car. Hand built and rarely driven is a recipe for disaster and these cars deliver. Former Rolls owner here. These would make for good boat anchors.

        Like 2
  31. sonnyMember

    Hoovies credibility on repairs is questionable but the Car Wizard seems to know his mechanics! He will not attempt to work on one again. That said, call your local RR/Bentley dealer and ask them ….be sitting when you hear the hourly rate and the stories of the 80-96 Bentleys. As Ward said above and I totally agree, best left to the DYI person that can repair himself and has retired…. they always seem to have something wrong with them. I do love the interior design and materials used but a tank is not needed unless it can be counted on to perform.

    Like 1
  32. Tom Crum

    I love these Rolls Royces and Bentleys. However, I am retired from the auto industry in Detroit and remain faithful to American iron. I maintain Lincoln Mark VI’s and a mint 1971 New Yorker that I am the second owner of. Many more luxury features on a Mark VI than on an older Rolls.

    Like 0

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