This is what the lineup was like when I showed up in Portland, Ore. the other day. Bentley Bentaygas everywhere.
I was not complaining.
First, as I was gliding down the escalator at Portland International Airport, I was greeted at the bottom by an iPad with the Bentley logo and friendly gentleman ready to chauffeur me to the, later to be discussed, hotel.
From the initial greeting, we secured my luggage and then headed directly outside where a fiery red Bentayga strolls up to pick me up. As I gracefully slid inside the backseat, I noticed the smooth jazz music serenading me to add to the class that was placed on top of the already quarter of a million-dollar SUV (customized price of the V8 is $280,949.50). Some of the first features, outside of the beauty of the large and in-charge vehicle, was the tablet-like technological advancements in the backseat.
In a standard front-to-back vehicle, you would typically find air-conditioning vents in this location; however, the Bentayga has a removable device which allows the passenger to control the climate, music, airflow and the two rear-facing LED screens dictating the back seat.
Once we traveled through the eclectic downtown Portland, we arrived at the Sentinel Hotel where we were welcomed by a group of employees that assisted in getting us settled into the classical hotel.
I felt transferred into time and it tied in beautifully with the history of the Bentley brand.
Once I settled into my room, I noticed the brilliance of the Bentley team as they created a newspaper-like welcome packet to add to the element of the company’s heritage. It was very strategic and nicely executed. Following the evening dinner and mingling, we turned in for the evening before what was to come on Sunday morning – the Pirelli World Challenge.
Rolling up in a family of Bentley’s was definitely a way to show up to a race. Heads turned. People loved it. It was great.
After making our way into the infield, the intimate group of us were able to chat with the Factory Bentley and KPAX Racing Team to hear the ins-and-outs of the racing group. They shared how each day on the circuit consists of an hour race in the Sprint X Class where two drivers switch out every half-an-hour.
This particular racetrack – Portland International Raceway – is rather shorter in comparison to others on the circuit, as it is only two miles long and it takes the racers approximately 1.12 minutes to complete a lap. They are using modified Bentley Continental GTs that range from 550-600 horsepower.
Yes, that is fast. Yes, these are supercars. Yes, it is incredible. Just in-case you were asking.
Following race day, the Bentley team mapped out a scenic drive route through Oregon and into the lush state of Washington.
It was absolutely incredible.
We began by winding through the Portland backroads and stopped at the wool-creation mill Pendleton where we were able to take a quick peak at how they create the fabrics and an inside scoop on how Bentley artistically incorporates similar designs and features into the interior of their vehicles.
After this tour, we hopped back into the fleet of Bentaygas and crossed over the rushing water passageways on the Cascade Locks bridge. Where we stopped in for a family-style lunch on the peaceful Hood River. Once we were nice and full, the anxious group climbed back into the respectful cars and drove an additional route where we were able to stop in-front of the majestic Mount Hood base.
This was a breathtaking view and definitely a thought-out spectacle that Bentley has planned on the drive route.
The trip was incredible and the new Bentley Bentayga is definitely worth looking into if you are in the market for a luxury SUV.
To learn more about the Bentayga and the entire Bentley lineup, visit their website at www.BentleyMotors.com.
Follow Shaun Melady on Instagram at @ShaunMelady.