Bentley Motors Limited was created in 1919 by Walter Owen Bentley, also known simply as "W.O." The company originally manufactured engines for British planes during the First World War, including the famous Sopwith Camel. Bentley was an innovator, and was the first to use aluminum pistons in aircraft engines, greatly reducing their weight, and he took that innovation with him when the war ended and he began to manufacture cars. The Bentley Company was always short on cash, and so in 1925 Bentley asked millionaire Woolf Barnato for help. Barnato bailed the company out, but effectively became the man in charge. The company was later sold to Rolls-Royce through a secret deal and dummy corporation, at which point W.O. left the organization. Today, the company is owned by Volkswagen.
After the takeover by Rolls-Royce, the new Bentley 3.5 liter was created and released at the same time as the Rolls-Royce 20/25. The car was well liked, even by the displaced Bentley himself. As the years wore on, however, things began to change for Bentley, and fewer cars with their brand name were sold, until only 5% of all Rolls Royce cars carried the Bentley badge. This was turned around beginning in 1980 under the leadership of Vickers, and focused on bringing back the style and functionality of the original Bentleys. This brought Rolls-Royce and Bentley production into parity once again.
One of the most popular Bentley series, which ran from 1955-1965, was the S Series. This included three models, the S1, S2 and S3. These were coupe models, and bore a strong resemblance to the Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud which was released at the same time. The S1 used the 4.9 liter straight six engine from the old Bentley R-type, but by the time the S2 rolled out, it had been swapped for a 6.2 liter V8 similar in design to Cadillac's. The S-series only ran for 10 years, but has many classic Bentley features loved by enthusiasts. Finding reasonable S series car insurance quotes can be difficult, and although purchasing an S series to fix up may be cheaper initially than buying a new Bentley, not finding the right Bentley S series auto insurance can severely handicap any restorer's ability to get the car up and running.
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