Bentley has unveiled its newest, and most efficient Continental models at the 2012 NAIAS (North American International Auto Show) in Detroit, each with the all-new twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 engine. The new engine promises to improve fuel efficiency and emissions by 40 percent, while still producing a significant amount of power for an exhilarating drive.
The newest Bentley V8 is a technologically advanced engine that helps provide efficient power. The 4.0-liter engine will be featured in the Continental GT and GTC V8 models, and be positioned beneath the W-12 models in the model range.
When designing and developing the new Continental GT and GTC V8 range, Bentley engineers focused on reducing friction and using the latest technology to improve efficiency. The 4.0-liter V8 features direct fuel injection, an energy charging recuperation system, low friction bearings, thermal management, and optimized turbocharger placement for an effective way of producing large amounts of power.
One of the new features the Bentley is using to reduce emissions and improve economy is variable displacement technology. By using an advanced management system the 4.0-liter Continental V8 can deactivate four cylinders at cruising speed or low throttle input and operate as a V-4 engine. Upon greater throttle input, the remaining four cylinders are instantly activated and the engine operates as a normal V8. To maintain NVH, Bentley uses hydraulic engine mounts that adjust softness and reduce vibration.
Both the Bentley Continental GT V8 and Bentley Continental GTC V8 models will produce 500 bhp at 6,000 RPM and 487 lb-ft. at just 1,700 RPM. In the GT V8 model, 60 mph can be reached in 4.6 seconds and top speed is limited to 188 mph. For the GTC V8, 60 mph takes just 4.7 seconds to reach and top speed is pegged at 187 mph.
The new Bentley V8 is mated to a new eight-speed close-ratio automatic transmission with incredibly quick shifts for better performance and efficiency. Gears are shifted with smooth precision and send power to the advanced all-wheel drive system with 40:60 torque split and Torsen differential. A close ratio gearbox was chosen for the new 4.0-liter V8 so that each gear is properly located in the engine’s wide powerband. The result of the new transmission was a six percent improvement in efficiency for the Continental.
“With the new 4.0 litre V8 engine we are widening the appeal of the latest generation of Continentals, introducing a completely new driving experience,” said Wolfgang Dürheimer, Chairman and Chief Executive, Bentley Motors. “The new engine will have all the exhilarating power, drama and performance you would expect from a V8 engine sporting the famous Bentley wings, effortlessly delivered with our characteristic ‘wave of torque’. This is complemented by innovative powertrain technology that delivers exceptional fuel efficiency and emissions.”
Both the Bentley Continental GT V8 and Bentley Continental GTC V8 models will feature a number of aesthetic distinctions. At the front, each model will proudly wear a red Bentley ‘B’ badge, gloss black matrix grille with chrome accents, and a three-part black matrix lower bumper with body-colored strakes. Chrome ‘figure eight’ tailpipe will emphasize the new V-8 engine at the rear. Both models will come standard with 20-inch wheels, and can be optioned with six-spoke, 21-inch Diamond Black or Diamond Silver wheels.
Inside, Bentley offers exclusive interiors with a luxurious and sporty feel. Dark Fiddleback Eucalyptus veneer is featured on the dashboard and trim throughout the cockpit. Instead of the traditional leather headliner, the GT and GTC V8 models will boast Eliade cloth with a technical finish. Customers can also opt for a two-tone color split for the entire interior for a custom tailored look.
The Bentley Continental GT V8 and Bentley Continental GTC V8 models will be available in seven exterior colors with three hood colors for GTC models. Four standard interior hide colors are also available. In addition, customers can also opt for the full range of 17 exterior and 17 interior colors with seven dual-tone options and eight hood finishes. European pricing for the Bentley Continental GT V8 will begin at €136,000, while the GTC V8 models will start at €149,600. Pricing for the United States has not been released.
Bentley Continental GT V8 and Continental GTC V8 Specifications
Displacement: 4.0 liters
Number of Cylinders: V-8
Maximum Horsepower: 500 bhp (373 kW) at 6,000 RPM
Maximum Torque: 487 lb-ft. (660 Nm) at 1,700 RPM
Type: Eight-speed automatic with paddle shift
Acceleration 0-60 mph: 4.6 s/4.7 s
Acceleration 0-62 mph: 4.8s/5s
Top Speed: 188 mph/187 mph
EPA Fuel Economy (GT/GTC):
Range: 533 miles/517 miles
Weights and Volumes (GT/GTC):
Unladen Weight: 5,060 lbs./5,445 lbs.
Gross Weight: 6,036 lbs./6,393 lbs.
Fuel Tank: 24 US Gal/24 US Gal
Bentley Continental GT V8 and Continental GTC V8 Video
Bentley Continental GT V8 and Continental GTC V8 Gallery