The true test of a newly purchased classic is its first long run. Hundreds of miles on a journey taking in the UK’s busy roads are likely to show up any faults or flaws that might need attention or sow the seeds of regret.
Attending a friend’s wedding in Kent seemed to be an ideal opportunity for the Turbo R to stretch its legs as well as lend a sense of occasion to the trip – although it wouldn’t be deployed as a wedding car.
While the bulk of the mileage would be completed on motorways there would be a fair share of sweeping A-roads and country lanes.
When you think of aftermarket car accessories and tuning, the first vehicles that come to mind are probably Corsas, Saxos, Fiestas and so on.
A Bentley Turbo R might not necessarily be among those vehicles, but this car is surprisingly upgradeable.
It had already shed its original 15-inch wheels in favour of a set of 1990s 17-inch Bentley alloys, as well as had twin headlamp units retro-fitted (a job that cost the thick end of £1,000 in the early 1990s, according to the receipts that came with the car) and there was more to come.
During my formative years when I was cultivating my interest in four-wheeled vehicles, the Bentley Turbo R was one of the absolute top cars of the time.
I remember a 1989 cover of one of the weekly magazines with a newly quad-lamped Turbo R looking stately, yet menacing.
In the weeks leading up to my decision to buy the Turbo R, I’d done a little research and also consulted a friend active in the Northern section of the Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts Club.
When I was learning to drive, part of it included getting to grips with overtaking safely. It involved staying far enough back from the slower vehicle to get a good view ahead and when safe, shift down a gear or two to ensure the manoeuvre was carried out quickly and safely.
But how often do we now seem to be stuck in a queue of traffic behind something slow with no one seeming to have an appetite to overtake. No one can blame the HGV at the front of the queue. On single-carriageway A-roads their legal maximum speed is 40mph.
So when the speed limit is 60mph and most modern cars are capable of reaching 60mph from 40mph in less than 10 seconds, why are people content to sit in a queue several vehicles long behind something slow?
The Jensen's aims for the unknown in its final photoshoot before being sold.
It was five years ago that I mistakenly went to a classic car auction and raised my hand at the wrong time, burdening myself with a slice of British automotive history powered by a lump of iron Detroit muscle.
Come to think of it, 7.2 litres is probably as big as engines got in postwar British production cars.
The fuel bills were eye-watering, and although it had never let me down (I had called out the AA once in five years of ownership), the Jensen SP was now in its 40th year and would probably become more difficult to maintain.
I never expected to keep it five years so it was perhaps more surprising that I hadn't put it up for sale before now. Within a week of advertising it was gone. A gentleman who already owned two royal blue Jensen SPs and decided he needed a third, giving him a 1.3% share of all the SPs ever built.
When I was a journalism student, the internet was in its infancy. People used it for reference, and there was no scope to publish work outside of print media.
The internet is a wonderful thing, despite it drastically changing how we consume media in print. I spent my formative years in print, which at the time was highly suspicious of so-called 'new media'.
Anyway, fast-forward 15 years or so and here we are. I've worked across various platforms in digital and print, journalism still has students, we still have print media - although in a much leaner form - and there are thousands of blogs in every area of interest.
VAT increasing to 20 per cent from January 2011 has pushed fuel prices closer to record highs.
But there seems to be less appetite for revolt now than 10 years ago when 85p a litre prompted lorry drivers to blockade fuel refineries that brought the country to a near standstill.
It is well documented that the amount of tax (including fuel duty) that we pay on fuel in the UK is among the very highest in Europe.
How can we justify such high prices when many of us now pay higher road tax, especially since the higher rates were imposed with almost £1,000 payable for high-CO2 cars in their first year?
The other week I represented Fleet News (and Toyota) in the RAC Future Car Challenge.
More than 60 vehicles using current and future low or zero-emissions technology took part in a run from Brighton to central London.
Aided and abetted by John Slavin, we were enlisted to drive a Toyota Auris Hybrid.
Toyota had entered many in the event, including all three generations of the Prius, while other manufacturers, including Ford, Vauxhall, Volkswagen, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Skoda and Honda.
First of all, perhaps I should declare an interest.
In the early hours of the morning one Friday last December, I tried in vain to turn a four-wheel drive vehicle into a corner at 20mph. It slid off the road and became grounded.
Despite having permanent four-wheel drive and a lockable centre diff, there was no way out without being winched by a recovery vehicle three hours later.
That car was on standard road tyres. When I was offered a set of cold weather tyres by ATS Euromaster for this winter, it didn't take me long to decide.
Three new upper-medium cars made their debuts at the Paris Motor Show.
Highest profile, it being in France, was the Peugeot 508.
Then, perhaps more important in terms of volume, was the so-called ‘new’ Volkswagen Passat.
Finally, but arguably the most impressive of the three, was the Kia Optima.
The Peugeot 508 was shown as a four-door and SW estate. Peugeot has said the 508 saloon will sell more units in China than saloon and SW combined in Europe.