New Bentley Continental GT
Following the success of the past two models, Bentley, master craftsmen of bespoke road lounges to the well-off, has reinvented the Continental GT to create what they call the “Definition of Grand Touring”. The new Bentley Continental GT is based on an all new Volkswagen-Audi Group MSB platform, much like the one used to underpin the latest Porsche Panamera.
The largest differences in terms of the design elements of the GT are the elements drawn from the EXP 10 Speed 6 Concept car. The front end takes heavily from this, making use of the same sleek clean cut lines and overall shape while making use of the latest in lighting technology in the form of LED Matrix Headlights with integrated Crystals to ensure light is transferred in the most efficient way, providing intense frontal illumination. At the rear, the most important change would be the move to the rounder style of the tail lights that feature the same Crystal integration. The vehicle’s lines are less muscular and are sharper and acute, more in line with the coupe nature of the GT and in fact the essence of EXP 10 which has been transferred in this model, a clear contrast when compared to the older model.
The New GT is very much a new project and has received a ground up re-envisioning, and as such has received Audi Group’s 48V electrical system, dubbed Bentley Dynamic Ride, which powers the anti-roll bars and a new three-chamber air spring suspension system that has a greater volume with the aim of increasing both vehicle comfort and dynamics when pressing on, thus ensuring that this is still a properly capable sports car. In line with the move to more modern and lightweight vehicle design, Bentley has made use of lightweight aluminium on the exterior panelling, resulting in an 85kg weight saving.
Powering the GT is the hand crafted 6.0 Litre Twin-turbo W12 engine lifted from the Bentayga, offering 467 kW @ 6 000 rpm and 900 N.m from 1 350 rpm to 4 500 rpm. These figures are good for properly fast figures of 0-100 km/h in 3.7 secs and a top speed of 333 km/h. In the interest of efficiency, new additions include cylinder deactivation and the use of Stop/Start technology.
In the pursuit of the creation of the most bespoke product possible, Bentley have thrown an extensive list of technology and innovation at the new GT with the interior receiving a key new feature in form of the new 12.3” Bentley Rotating Display, which serves as the main control means of the dashboard navigation, media and telephone and infotainment. While it’s the same unit to be found in the new Panamera and Upcoming Cayenne, it benefits from a unique-to-Bentley software with gamefication etc. This is complemented with a digital and configurable dashboard, a concept similar to Audi’s Virtual Cockpit. Other additions are the option of Three sound systems; the standard 10-speaker 650 Watt Bentley unit and a Bang & Olufsen system featuring 16 speakers with a 16-channel 1 500 Watt amplifier and the first automotive application of the BeoSonic control interface, which doesn’t mean much to most but I’d imagine is great. The top spec Naim system features an ear drum piercing 2 200 Watt and includes 18 speakers and two Active Bass Transducers.
The list of driver aids is very long and encompasses a lot of passive and active features such as High Beam Assist, Blind Spot Warning up-to 250 km/h, Exit Warning which warns vehicle occupants of objects approaching from the rear when opening the doors, optional City Specification including Traffic Sign Recognition, Rear Crossing, Traffic Warning, Park Assist, Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Assist Night Vision and a Heads Up Display.
2018 Bentley Continental GT pricing in South Africa.
While international orders have begun, there is no word yet on pricing but expect the first examples to land in early 2018.