I was fortunate this week to be able to spend a little bit of time looking around the new Bentley Continental GT in the showroom at Bentley Birmingham.
For the most part since the car was launched I have loved the look of it. The previous generation was a bit of a marmite car but I do think it looked better as it aged with minor face lifts added regularly. It could never be considered an elegant or beautiful car though which is something I think the new version most certainly can. The smooth lines and elegant curves make the car extremely pleasing to the eye from most angles. The only angle I’m unsure on is the straight front on view especially if looking down on the car.
It seems a little for want of a better word, gogglyeyed. Of course aesthetics are completely subjective and many would disagree with me there. From every other angle it oozes class and luxury and is far less ostentatious than the previous generation. The little details on this First Edition model really make the car look extra special, from the heritage 12 badge on the side grill to the edition one union jack badge on each wing. It is however definitely a car where colour and wheel choice are crucial. With the wrong selection you lose all of those wonderful lines and the wheels can look far too small against what is a very large car.
All modern Bentleys have some of the best luxury cabins of all car manufacturers. You can feel every one of the many man hours required to hand craft every little aspect you see and feel in their cars. However the previous generation Continental, whilst still a wonderful place to be, was showing its age somewhat particularly in the technology stakes and the update has brought the car right up to date. As soon as you
open the door the luxurious quilted leather door trims and metal switchgear on the doors grab your gaze which is then diverted to the illuminated door sills and first edition badge. Then you see the dashboard and centre console which is now modern and up to date but still with the Bentley opulence very much apparent. The dual tone wood inlays matched up with exquisite milled switchgear and toggles and all the technology you would expect from a new luxury car and those all important First Edition badges reminding you that you were one of the first.
The engine is the 6.0 litre W12 engine from the previous car with numerous changes and still has twin turbochargers. It now creates 626 bhp and has a 0-62 mph time of 3.7 seconds and a top speed over 207 mph meaning it is a faster accelerating car a legal speeds at least than the previous generation Supersports car. I’m sure the V8 engine Bentley use will be added at some point down the line. I wasn’t given the chance to drive the car but it was started up whilst I was looking around and it made a deep and meaningful burble from the outside.
Having been in the previous model Continental GTC in both W12 and V8S forms I would love to get the chance to ride in or even drive the new model in the future. I would have had the previous generation model in my dream garage in GTC form and probably with the V8S engine and the new model is pushing that one out of its theoretical parking space. I can’t wait to see what the new GTC will look like because I think the Continental is best had in convertible form as it suits it’s laid back cruise anywhere nature. What better than a summers day cruising the British countryside in a topless Bentley? Providing it doesn’t rain of course.
Please follow, like and let me know what you think of the new Continental in the comments. Mat