Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

The helm of a Bentley Mulsanne is an extremely agreeable place to find yourself. The driver’s seat is one of the comfiest around, and the beautifully-crafted button-ridden steering wheel feels substantial and tactile. The dash, with gauges displaying both vehicle and engines speeds and a screen showing a number of user-selectable parameters, is easy to read and extremely stylish.

In the centre console just below the screen for the media and sat nav there’s an impressive-looking analogue clock, an engine temperature gauge and a fuel level indicator. In the arm rest on the driver’s door even the controls for the electric windows are finished in an attractive polished stainless steel. Unique Bentley trademarks include the organ stop controls for the air conditioning vents and the 'upside down' speedo and rev counter, whose needles start in the one o'clock position rather than the normal seven o'clock position.

In fact, the only criticism from a driver’s point of view is that your passengers will very likely be more comfortable than you are.

This is the Mulsanne’s real forte. The firm spends 170 man-hours hand-crafting the interior of each one of its flagship cars, and it shows. The sumptuous leather upholstery can be ordered in any colour you like, while there’s a wide range of wood veneers available too. The floor mats are made from pure wool and sit on top of carpet which is exclusively made for Bentley and extra thick to further accentuate the luxury feel of the car.

The switches are made from glass, there are stainless steel trims all over. The entire cabin has an aura of opulence you’d expect from a car of this price. The front seats are electronically adjustable 12 different ways, while the rear seats have eight types of adjustment – the controls for which can be found along with those for air conditioning, on the folding centre armrest between the two seats.

On the road, it’s hard not to be impressed with the Mulsanne’s ride-quality. It’s supple and cossetting to the extent that it’s almost peerless, and only a handful of manufacturers are able to match such a comfortable automotive experience. Wind and road noise are almost non-existent, but there’s a 14-speaker stereo system just in case you don’t fancy talking to the other occupants in the car.