Speed for the one-percent
Continental GT Speed is Bentley's new performance flagshipGerry Malloy
Published: August 23, 2012, 10:00 AM
Updated: April 29, 2018, 4:04 PM
Bentley has released more details about its new Continental GT Speed in advance of its official international show debut at the Moscow auto show on August 29.
With a top speed of 330 km/h, the company says the new all-wheel drive performance flagship is the fastest road-car Bentley has ever produced. Orders are being taken now, with deliveries scheduled to start in October 2012.
The GT Speed is powered by Bentley’s 6.0-litre twin-turbo W-12 engine, which is rated at 616 horsepower at 6000 rpm – 49 hp more than the standard Continental GT – with 590 lb-ft of torque available from 2000 to 5000 rpm.
Controlled by state-of-the-science engine management software, it's mated to a new ZF eight-speed close-ratio automatic transmission, which is also now fitted to the GT and GTC models.
Bentley says the big all-wheel-drive coupe will accelerate from 0-to-100 km/h in 4.2 seconds, putting it in serious performance-car territory.
In addition to the new engine management system and eight-speed transmission, all Bentley W-12 engines, including that in the GT Speed, now feature an energy recuperation system. Together, these features are said to enable a 12% reduction in fuel consumption.
The GT Speed's added power is matched by an enhanced chassis with up-rated springs, anti-roll bars and bushings, a lowered ride height (by 10mm front and rear), and retuning of the electronically-controlled damping and steering systems.
Its all-wheel-drive system is biased 60:40 in favour of the rear to give it a rear-wheel-drive feel, while providing access to it prodigious performance potential all-year round in virtually any weather conditions or road surface conditions.
In spite of its performance orientation, Bentley says, the newest addition to the Continental stable still displays the brand's legendary refinement and. Even the exhaust note, deeper and more exhilarating under hard acceleration, remains civilized and refined during high-speed cruising, the company says.
Subtle signature design cues distinguish the GT Speed from its stable-mates. They include exclusive 21-inch, ten-spoke alloy wheels, dark-tint matrix to the radiator shell and lower bumper grilles and ‘rifled’ exhaust tailpipes.
Inside the handcrafted cabin, the Speed models are specified exclusively with the Mulliner Driving Specification, featuring quilted, perforated leather and bright metal detailing plus a broader choice of optional technical finishes.
They now includes an exclusive-to-Speed dark tint aluminium as well as carbon fibre.
The net result is a highly distinctive, contemporary, luxury-sport coupe with enough performance to knock your socks off.
If you're in the one-percent, treat yourself!