The world of grand touring has changed. Enter the new Continental GT and the new Continental GT Convertible.
With sleek lines that carve a sharp path through the air, this phenomenal new car is available as both a coupé and a convertible. Built from the ground up with a new Bentley design language, new Bentley technology and new levels of handcrafted detail, they elevate the concept of grand touring to new heights.
Together, they herald a new era of unrivalled power, exquisite craftsmanship and cutting-edge automotive technology. Which will you choose?
Learn more about the new Continental GT Convertible.
The grand tourer, redefined.
Bentley’s design team has completely reimagined the finest car in its class. Taking our hallmarks of power and refinement and pushing them further still, the new Continental GT and the new Continental GT Convertible redefine what a grand tourer can be. And inside the cabin, a whole new level of luxury awaits.
A stunning demonstration of Bentley’s unrivalled attention to detail, this is a true journey of discovery for the driver. Designed to delight every sense, this is a car to see, feel, hear and appreciate.
In creating this car, the designers and engineers have delivered everything you expect from Bentley – in a car that can transport four adults comfortably, with enough space for plenty of luggage. Designed and built at the Bentley factory in England, this is the definitive grand tourer.
Whatever the weather and whatever your destination, the new Continental GT will take you there in unprecedented style.
Both the new Bentley Continental GT and the new Continental GT Convertible combine classic grand tourer proportions with a completely new chassis and electrical architecture. This has enabled the design team to create a car that is impressively long, low, wide and sleek. The result is a truly beautiful, agile grand tourer with unrivalled road presence.
Steel, aluminium and composite materials take their place alongside finely crafted veneers and leather in a stunning example of automotive design – one that can be enhanced with a wealth of options.
The sharp, crisp feature lines of the new Continental GT range show the influence of the original Bentley R-Type Continental. The muscular haunch line exudes a sense of refined power, while the power line now emerges from between the headlamps, tracing a path down the side of the car.
The long wheelbase and short nose lend the car a sense of dynamism, even when viewed at a standstill. Beneath the bonnet, this arrangement allows the engine to be located lower, for optimum weight distribution and more agile handling.
Intricately crafted new crystal-effect LED headlamps help define a new face for the Continental, while at the rear, newly designed elliptical lamps shine from within individual polished bezels – their shape reflected in the oval tailpipes.
A wide range of custom-designed wheels can be commissioned, with a 21” design available as standard a choice of 22” designs available with the optional Mulliner Driving Specification. With their twisting 3D surfaces, these larger wheels reflect the light magnificently, thanks to a finish that can only be achieved by hand.
For those who like to drive in the open air, the new Continental GT Convertible offers a sleek, open-top take on the stunning lines of the Continental GT.
Inside, Bentley’s design team has taken automotive craftsmanship to an exquisite new level.
Like that of every Bentley, the shape of the fascia is inspired by the wings of the Bentley badge. It sweeps up from an elegant centre console and reaches out towards the doors, where the surface continues, surrounding the front occupants in a seemingly unending ring of handcrafted leather and wood.
In addition to a wide range of veneered surfaces, both the new Continental GT and Continental GT Convertible can be commissioned with a choice of innovative dual veneers, which see the natural grain of handcrafted wood separated from a contrasting finish by a narrow strip of polished chrome. In each case, a mirror-like Piano Black finish is paired with your choice of Dark Fiddleback Eucalyptus, Dark Stained Madrona, Liquid Amber or Tamo Ash. For those who prefer a single veneer, there are eight choices, including Koa, our new, mid-tone, straight-grained veneer. Koa is a wood species used in its native Hawaii in the creation of handmade surfboards and guitars.
The finish selected for the lower section of the fascia continues into the centre console. As an alternative, however, the console can be commissioned with our new stunning, rippled 0.6mm aluminium finish Côtes de Genève, which is inspired by the milled internal casings of fine wristwatches. A hand-finished first for the automotive world, its textured bands literally shimmer in the light.
Decorative features such as the clock bezels and bulls-eye air vents can be commissioned with a new and intricate diamond knurling – a jewellery-inspired texture composed of myriad diamond-shaped flat surfaces. This complements the feature that is standard on control surfaces in the new Continental GT and Continental GT Convertible, it is easy to grip and even easier on the eye, reflecting the light like a cut precious stone while improving the ergonomic performance of important controls.
To showcase Bentley’s unmatched attention to detail, the designers have selected a striking range of hides and interior colour splits. Hand-cut from grade-A leather hides, every seat is upholstered by hand.
For the ultimate in driving luxury, the optional Front Seat Comfort Specification is perfect for longer journeys. It includes electrically adjustable headrests and bolsters, alongside ventilation and massage functions, ensuring that every mile you travel is as relaxing as the first. If you select the new Continental GT Convertible, the specification also includes a heated armrest and neck warmers in the front seats, so you can enjoy open-top driving all year round.
Available as part of the Mulliner Driving Specification, new diamond-in-diamond quilting can be commissioned for all four seats. Positioned on the seats, door casings and rear quarters, it is soft to the touch and, from both the inside and outside of the car, truly stunning in appearance.
For new Continental GT Convertible, a choice of seven hood colours is accompanied by a choice of a further eight inner linings.
To see the design of the new Continental GT range for yourself, please contact your local Bentley dealer.
With a 6.0 litre Bentley 12-cylinder engine, both the new Continental GT and Continental GT Convertible deliver phenomenal power and exhilarating, agile handling. Built and calibrated to offer the ultimate grand touring experience, it has four full-size seats and a range of driving technology to make every journey a joy.
Active All-Wheel Drive A new range of systems operate throughout the car to ensure you can drive it with confidence, at all times. Active All-Wheel Drive ensures that, power can be directed to the front as required, based on the selected Drive Dynamic mode, providing additional grip, the moment it is required.
Active roll control Body roll is reduced with Bentley Dynamic Ride, an innovative 48V Electronic Active Roll Control system. As the car enters a corner, it engages automatically, continuously adjusting the anti-roll bars. On rougher road surfaces, it constantly monitors the suspension settings and adapts accordingly, for a luxurious, smooth ride. New three-chamber air suspension gives the car more scope for adjustment, which improves both dynamic handling and ride comfort. Continuous Damping Control regulates the damper setting as you drive, while four ride height sensors constantly measure the distance between the axle and the body, making adjustments as necessary.
Four driving modes are available for selection via the Bentley Driving Modes rotary dial located on the centre console. The Comfort mode optimises the chassis and drivetrain for luxurious cruising, while Sport retunes the powertrain for a more dynamic response. The active suspension and chassis settings are also altered, delivering firmer damping and more direct steering turn-in, for more agility and a truly thrilling drive. The Bentley mode provides the optimum balance of both Comfort and Sport, while the fourth mode, Custom, enables you to create your own combination of settings and store it for future use.
8-speed dual-clutch transmission An 8-speed dual-clutch transmission ensures smooth, fast gear changes while maximising fuel economy. Top speed is reached in sixth gear, with seventh and eighth reserved for more relaxed, efficient cruising.
In Sport mode, gear changes are incredibly fast – even by the standards of dual-clutch transmission cars – delivering uninterrupted acceleration. In Comfort mode the changes are almost imperceptibly smooth, to allow for a more refined ride.
Drivers can brake confidently at all times: pedal travel is minimal and the pressure point is precise, so you can react fast when you need to slow down – and always feel in control. For unrivalled stopping power, even under extreme conditions, the front axle features the largest iron brakes in series production. The internally vented, slotted brake discs dissipate heat more effectively, while the enclosed, one-piece callipers are both light and resistant to deformation.
Like every aspect of the engineering that goes into the new Continental GT, these innovations contribute to an incomparable drive. To find out when you can experience it for yourself, please contact your local Bentley dealer.
Both the new Continental GT and the new Continental GT Convertible are enhanced by a wealth of intuitive digital features – including the stunning new Bentley Rotating Display, a unique fusion of cutting-edge electronics and artisan craftsmanship. It represents the latest in Bentley’s forward-looking approach to technology, fusing ease of use with exquisite, ergonomic design.
As in every Bentley, features are added to enhance the experience of driving and travelling in the car, but never dominate it. The technology is integrated intelligently, to provide what is required at the right time, from touchscreen controls that highlight automatically to physical buttons and dials that can be accessed easily, without taking your eyes from the road. Connected services like Apple CarPlay, meanwhile, provide access to digital content on the move.
The easily accessed 12.3” main screen has a split-screen mode allows you to divide the car display in two at any time, allowing the driver to see navigation output and other essential information in the larger section, while the front seat passenger can scroll through music tracks or other information from the car infotainment system, simultaneously.
Whenever you reach towards the touchscreen, a proximity sensor detects your approaching hand and highlights controls that may be useful. Below the screen, meanwhile, a satin bar offers a place to rest your finger during operation. You can also access the main menu using the hard keys below the screen, if you prefer. It is this kind of attention to detail that sets Bentley apart.
Sitting in the centre of the fascia, the optional Bentley Rotating Display allows you to tailor the car’s instrumentation according to your mood. When the engine roars into life, a flat, veneered section of the fascia physically rotates to reveal the 12.3” high-resolution touchscreen. If you prefer a more classic instrument style, a further rotation reveals another veneered panel, this one with three analogue dials: a compass, a temperature gauge and a chronograph timer. A final, reverse rotation takes place when the engine is turned off, restoring the display to its original, veneer-only position, for an uninterrupted flow of wood, right across the fascia.
Even when driving without the central touchscreen visible, all essential driver information is visible in the digital instrument panel behind the steering wheel. The instrument panel itself can be configured in numerous ways – between the rev counter and the navigation map, for example.
In cars commissioned without the Bentley Rotating Display, the 12.3” touchscreen is fixed in the dashboard, visible to the driver at all times.
A comprehensive suite of assistance systems allows the driver to enjoy the very latest automotive technology – and all can be activated or turned off, according to your preference.
The Lane Assist feature provides gentle steering assistance if it detects any drift across lane boundaries, while Blind Spot Assist monitors the area around the car, flashing lights in the door mirrors if you attempt to cross the path of another vehicle. An optional Head-Up Display (HUD) puts relevant information in the driver’s line of sight.
Integrated Traffic Sign Recognition detects speed limits and zones in which overtaking is prohibited. When activated, its information is displayed in the digital instrument cluster and the HUD car display. Even temporary speed restrictions can be detected.
Night vision The new Continental GT’s Night Vision camera monitors the road up to 300m ahead, making driving in poorly lit environments much safer. It detects moving obstacles such as pedestrians and large animals, highlighting them in the central touchscreen.
Adaptive Cruise Control provides intelligent assistance that makes driving on long journeys much easier. As with standard cruise control, it enables the car to maintain a fixed pre-set speed. But it also uses long-range radar sensors to maintain a specified gap, relative to the car in front. It can bring the car to a complete halt in traffic jams and then automatically move again in line with the traffic, re-establishing the space between you and the vehicle in front. And all without your feet touching the pedals.
Matrix beam headlamps To make driving at night even easier, intelligent LED matrix beam headlamps allow the main beam to be used continuously – they even dim automatically for the benefit of oncoming traffic. The system will automatically optimise the beam for different conditions, on the highway, in the city or in the country – and the LEDs will even dim to stop the light reflected from road signs dazzling the driver.
An integrated Wi-Fi hotspot*, allows you to connect up to eight phones or other portable, digital devices to the internet while on the move. Meanwhile, a suite of digital technologies are on hand to enhance your driving experience.
Apple CarPlay* takes your music and favourite apps from your phone – plus familiar iPhone features such as maps, contacts and voice control – and delivers them via the car’s touchscreen, for easier access while driving.
Real-time traffic information incorporates live traffic data into the car’s navigation system, helping you avoid traffic congestion.
Online search works in the same way as GoogleTM search. Specific destinations can be discovered via free text entry and integrated into the navigation system, providing useful information about your destination, such as phone numbers or opening hours. And with the My Bentley app, you can share destination data from your phone to your car, ensuring the car’s system is primed before you set off.
Private eCall* connects you to a local emergency call centre and gives them your location, providing extra peace of mind on long journeys. Activated automatically on deployment of any of the airbags, it can also be activated via an SOS button in the roof module overhead.
An optional Head-Up Display* can display important driver information on the windscreen itself, including your speed, the speed limit and directions from the navigation system.
Packages of options make it easier to commission collections of related features together. They include the City Specification – with Hands Free Boot Opening, a Top View Camera, Traffic Sign Recognition, Pedestrian Warning and City Assist – and the Touring Specification, with Active Lane Assist, Active Cruise Control with Traffic Assist, Bentley Safeguard Plus and the Night Vision camera.
To see how all these features come together to create the ultimate grand touring experience, contact your Bentley dealer.
With an enormous range of options to choose from, it is unlikely you will ever see another Continental GT – or Continental GT Convertible – quite like yours. To appreciate the wealth of personalisation opportunity for yourself, start building your Continental today with our online Configurator.
Centenary Specification The new Continental GT is, in many ways, a symbol of Bentley’s glorious first century of automotive innovation. And all Continental GTs – both coupé and convertible – built at the Bentley factory in Crewe in 2019 will feature additional design details that commemorate Bentley’s Centenary.
These features include bonnet, boot and wheel badges with a specially created metallic finish, Centenary Gold, which can also be seen on the steering wheel, the gear lever and the key.* As an additional option, you can also request contrast stitching and cross stitching in Centenary Gold thread, plus Centenary Gold embroidery of the Bentley Wings on the headrests.**
You can learn more about the Centenary Specification here.
Designed to provide a striking and assertive look, the Blackline Specification replaces all of the exterior body brightware with black-painted trim except the Bentley wing badges and rear lettering. This finish gives the Continental GT a more dramatic character while providing a high degree of visual differentiation.
Included in Blackline Specification are black door handles, black radiator matrix grille and surround, black headlamp and tail lamp surrounds plus black exhaust pipes. The side window surrounds, wing vents and lower side sills are also painted black.
See Blackline Specification for Continental GT on the Configurator
Adding a luxurious, sporting style to the interior and exterior of Continental GT and Continental GT Convertible, the Mulliner Driving Specification is a collection of features including unique 22” wheels, alongside jewel-finish oil and fuel-filler caps. Inside, it adds Sports pedals and the option of additional Piano Black or Dark Stained Burr Walnut veneers, plus embroidered Bentley emblems on the seats, as well as diamond-in-diamond quilting to seats, door casings and rear quarters.
In addition to the dual veneer options, Bentley has introduced a new, contemporary finish: Koa veneer. Noted for its elegant tones and straight grain, it has long been used in its native Hawaii in the construction of surfboards and guitars.
Both the new Continental GT and Continental GT Convertible can be commissioned with a choice of audio systems.
The 650 watt Bentley System features ten speakers and an 11-channel amplifier, for rich, powerful sound, throughout the car. The optional new Bang & Olufsen system increases power output to 1,500 watts, delivered through 16 speakers via a 16-channel amplifier. With four distinct DSP modes it is the first automotive application of the company’s BeoSonic control system and the perfect choice for design lovers that appreciate excellent sound.
Read more at www.bang-olufsen.com/bentley.
Naim for Bentley represents the ultimate in-car audio choice: a 2,200-Watt, 18 speaker system with two shakers, a 20-channel amplifier, eight DSP modes and active bass. For true audiophiles, there is no equal.
The optional Front Seat Comfort specification allows for even greater adjustment than the standard Continental GT front seat, with an electrically adjustable headrest, rolling nose, adjustable bolsters, and the addition of both ventilation and massage functions. Together, these features combine to ensure the comfort of driver and front passengers alike, even on the longest of journeys.
In the Continental GT Convertible, the heating functions work alongside integrated neck warmers and a heated front armrest to ensure that, even on cooler days, you can enjoy top-down driving, as long as it’s dry.
Mood lighting Inside the car, optional mood lighting can be configured according to your preference, with seven different colours, each of which can be selected in vibrant or muted mode. The lighting is designed to reflect the external power lines of the car, so that it almost feels as if you are seated inside the designer’s original sketch of the car.
Own something unique From dual veneers to a host of technological options, the potential to tailor the car to your tastes is virtually endless.
To explore the myriad of possibilities, create your own Continental GT with our car configurator.
As a favorite of rappers, superstar athletes, and million- and billionaires, the Continental GT has something for everyone, so long as they're packing Louis Vuitton valises full of cash. Offered only as a four-seat convertible, it is available with just one powertrain: a 582-hp twin-turbo 6.0-liter W-12 engine paired with an eight-speed transmission. An all-new Continental GT goes on sale in spring 2019 and boasts a claimed 207-mph top speed and a 626-hp version of the W-12 engine.
Major redesigns occur every five years or so; not much changes in between. Dividing them into generations provides more meaningful distinctions in the shopping process.
First Drive Review
May 2018 By Joe Lorio Photos By The Manufacturer View 120 PhotosView 120 Photos
Austria’s Grossglockner High Alpine Road had only recently opened for the season when we nosed our 2019 Bentley Continental GT through the toll gate. With spritzing rain and the melting snowpack wetting the tarmac, we began our ascent of the more than 8200-foot pass, winding and unwinding the wheel through one switchback after another as we stair-stepped into the clouds and then descended through a thick fog. The previous Continental GT would not have been happy on this road. Sure, it could have stormed up the mountain, pulled along by the ample thrust from one of its turbocharged engines, but it would have suffered through the turns, impatiently waiting to unleash its torque once the wheels were again pointed straight.
Although this is still a luxurious grand tourer and not a playful sports car, the new Continental is surprisingly at home on the mountain pass. Instead of overburdening its front tires, it uses all four contact patches, steers faithfully, and exhibits a graceful fluidity that its predecessor never knew. The Grossglockner revealed a new Continental GT that felt fitter, fleeter, more energetic—as if the car had been given an elixir of youth.
That run up the Hochter Pass dovetailed with the new Continental’s visual impression. First introduced for 2004 and reworked for 2012, the Continental GT led the brand out of musty obscurity with nearly 70,000 total units sold—a huge number by Bentley standards. “It has become our icon,” says chief exterior designer John Paul Gregory. “It’s very important that it be instantly recognizable.” The overall size, shape, and key design elements are retained, and yet the new version looks wider and lower, even though those dimensions have changed by less than an inch. Credit the broader, more upright grille, set lower in a more sculpted fascia. It’s flanked by new headlamps with 82 LEDs arranged in matrices (which unfortunately will be dumbed down for the U.S. market, with simple high- or low-beam functionality rather than the ability to switch off individual LEDs to shape the beams around oncoming cars). Design-wise, the most critical features are that the fascia is more than four inches closer to the front wheels, the wheelbase has grown by 4.1 inches, and the rear overhang also is longer, all of which dramatically improve the car’s stance. There’s a longer hood, which also is lower because the engine sits lower and farther back in the chassis. Sleeker taillights are set in a concave oval panel, emphasizing the car’s width. The body panels are aluminum—save for the composite trunklid—helping the car shed a claimed 168 pounds, although at an estimated 5050 pounds it’s still a hefty machine.
The greater changes are mechanical. The old version shared a platform with the staid Volkswagen Phaeton; the new model utilizes the VW Group’s MSB architecture, seen also in the Porsche Panamera. The W-12 engine returns, but this is a new iteration. Introduced in the Bentayga, it now boasts port and direct fuel injection, a pair of twin-scroll turbochargers, and a dual-mass flywheel, yet it’s 66 pounds lighter. Output here is 626 horsepower (versus 582 previously) from 6.0 liters, along with 664 lb-ft of torque, which pours forth from 1350 to 4500 rpm. The W-12 will be the only engine at launch, but given that the V-8 was chosen by roughly two-thirds of buyers of the outgoing car, we’d expect it to return, probably a year or so after the 12-cylinder model arrives next spring.
Compared with the version in the Bentayga, the W-12 in the Continental makes 26 more horsepower, largely due to different ECU mapping. It also has a block that has been altered to allow the front driveshaft to poke through. That’s because the engine has moved some five inches rearward in the chassis, a change that helps reduce the front weight bias from 58 percent in the old GT to 55 percent here, according to Bentley. The W-12 is mated to an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission—the same ZF-sourced unit found in the Panamera—which Bentley has tuned for this application. This is the first ever dual-clutch in a Bentley, and its final programming delayed the car’s launch by six months. The results would seem to be worth it, as its low-speed smoothness rivals a torque-converter automatic’s and its shift strategy is unassailable—although there are shift paddles should you want to call the shots. (These are now located on the steering wheel rather than the previous column mounting.)
Once again, the engine drives all four wheels. But whereas the previous system had a 40/60 front/rear torque split, the new one effectively defaults to rear-wheel drive; when it detects slippage, it can direct a maximum of 38 percent of the torque to the front wheels—except in Sport mode, when just 17 percent can be sent forward.
The suspension utilizes new three-chamber air springs versus two-chamber units before; their extra bladder and greater volume is said to make for a more compliant ride. They work in concert with the standard active anti-roll bars (Bentley Dynamic Ride) powered by a 48-volt electrical system and first seen in the Bentayga. Brake-based torque vectoring—introduced on the previous GT3-R and Supersports models—can slow an inside rear wheel when entering a corner to aid turn-in and brake an inside front wheel when exiting to help the car power out of a corner. Vented, cast-iron brake rotors measure 16.5 inches up front and 15.0 at the rear, which Bentley boasts make them the largest discs ever fitted to a passenger car. (Bentley also claims the largest binders period, at 17.3 inches on the Bentayga; those are carbon-ceramics.) The fronts are squeezed by 10-piston calipers with four-piston units acting on the rears.
Less weight on the nose; a variable, more rear-biased torque split; torque vectoring; and those active anti-roll bars all go a long way toward explaining the Continental’s newfound appetite for curves. On the motorway, its dynamics are less changed. The Continental GT remains a serene mile eater. One new aspect, though, is sailing mode, which opens the transmission’s clutches and drops the revs to idle speed when you lift off the gas under certain conditions at highway speeds. Dip deep into the long-travel accelerator and the car hurtles forward with eye-widening quickness, speed building uninterrupted through the transmission’s ultra-quick shifts. Bentley says the Continental GT can reach 60 mph in 3.6 seconds, and the W-12 shows no sign of running out of steam even into triple-digit velocities—top speed is a claimed 207 mph. Even at full bellow, the W-12 doesn’t sing like a V-12, however. At most it emits a discreet bass rumble, and that’s only in Sport mode when you come off the throttle; there are none of the extroverted crackles and pops of, say, a Jaguar V-8.
The change in the exhaust note is one of the most notable differences switching from Comfort or the mid-level “Bentley” driving mode to Sport (a fourth choice is Custom), even though the modes also control the suspension, steering, transmission, and engine response. That the Continental GT does not vary wildly in its responses, however, proves to be part of its charm. Rather than trying to make this car appeal to a broad spectrum, the engineers seem to have aimed for a cohesive character, one that blends comfort and performance to a high degree. In any mode, the steering retains a pleasant heft and linearity, while the adaptive air springs and active anti-roll bars all but eliminate body lean without penalizing ride quality. The big Pirelli P Zeros (265/40ZR-21 front and 305/35ZR-21 rear as standard; a 275/35ZR-22 front and 315/30ZR-22 rear setup will be optional) acknowledge pavement imperfections, but the chassis is undisturbed by midcorner bumps.
The four-seat interior of the Continental GT is perhaps its most traditional aspect. One beholds acres of leather, its quilting both stitched and embossed. The hides extend even to usually neglected areas: the A-pillars, the sides of the console, the lower dash and door panels. Glossy wood trim or a new-for-2019 ribbed-aluminum alternative stretches from the console across the dash onto the door panels, while the controls and switches are rendered in chrome. Unlike in past Bentleys, however, the ritzy finishes aren’t compensating for dated, wonky electronics. The 12.3-inch central touchscreen (with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto) is not only generously sized, it’s sharply rendered and easy to use. Physical buttons below and on-screen touchpoints along the side provide quick shortcuts, and the home screen can simultaneously display up to three functions. But if that all seems too garishly modern, the optional Bentley Rotating Display ($6270) allows one to press a button to make it disappear and reveal a trio of analog gauges or, when the engine is off, a simple strip of veneer. Ahead of the driver is a virtual instrument cluster, which also is configurable, and there’s a head-up display. Against modern trends, Bentley doesn’t believe that stark minimalism is the key to style. The high, broad center console includes plenty of physical buttons and knurled-edge knobs, all of which operate with a quality feel that no haptic flat panel can impart.
The Continental GT’s youth regimen has not eroded its distinctiveness. Instead, its renewed mechanicals and toned sheetmetal make it a more athletic, better-looking version of its former self—an enviable change for all of us headed in the opposite direction.Photos Build and Price Shop Local Cars View All Features and Specs
VEHICLE TYPE: front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 4-passenger, 2-door coupe
ESTIMATED BASE PRICE: $225,000
ENGINE TYPE: twin-turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 48-valve W-12, aluminum block and heads, port and direct fuel injection
Displacement: 363 cu in, 5952 cc Power: 626 hp @ 6000 rpm Torque: 664 lb-ft @ 1350 rpm
TRANSMISSION: 8-speed dual-clutch automatic with manual shifting mode
DIMENSIONS: Wheelbase: 112.2 in Length: 190.9 in Width: 76.9 in Height: 55.3 in Trunk volume: 13 cu ft Curb weight (C/D est): 5050 lb
PERFORMANCE (C/D EST): Zero to 60 mph: 3.3 sec Zero to 100 mph: 8.1 sec Standing ¼-mile: 11.7 sec Top speed: 207 mph
EPA FUEL ECONOMY (C/D EST): Combined/city/highway: 18/15/24 mpg
Today, Bentley revealed the long-overdue replacement for the Continental GT grand touring luxury coupe, and it looks stunning. The new Continental GT is completely overhauled from the last-gen car, with new looks reminiscent of the wildly pretty EXP10 Speed 6 concept, a completely new interior, and an eight-speed dual clutch transmission for the first time ever.
Power comes from the familiar 6.0-liter turbocharged W12 found in cars like the Bentayga and Flying Spur. In this configuration, the engine pushes out 626 horsepower and 664 lb.-ft. of torque to an active all-wheel drive setup with launch control (in a Bentley!). 0-60 happens in 3.7 seconds, and top speed is a supercar-beating 207 mph. Under lighter loads, the engine will shut half of its cylinders off for better fuel consumption, and features start/stop technology. The suspension is a 48-volt adaptive air system that controls ride comfort and lateral roll to help balance through corners.
The elongated, flattened new body is made mostly from aluminum, and shares its underpinnings with the new Porsche Panamera. The Continental features a 5.3-inch longer wheelbase than the last-generation car and standard 21-inch wheels. Of course, 22-inch forged wheels are optional. According to Bentley, the newly-bodied GT is over 175 pounds lighter thanks to use of lightweight materials throughout.
Inside, Bentley has completely redone the interior, with an all-new dashboard, a digital instrument cluster, and a rotating 12.3-inch center touchscreen display that hides away to show either a solid piece of trim or three analog dials when not in use. As you'd expect from an ultra-luxury company like Bentley, all of the leathers and other materials are of the highest quality. Also, the paddle shifters have gone from being column mounted to being steering-wheel mounted.
The newest Continental GT will make its first appearance at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show on September 12th.
(Crewe, 29 August 2017) Bentley Motors is today announcing full details of its new Continental GT, the definitive Grand Tourer.
Designed, engineered and handcrafted in Britain, the new third-generation Bentley Continental GT combines spirited, focused performance with handcrafted luxury and cutting-edge technology, to create the finest Grand Tourer ever produced.
Wolfgang Dürheimer, chairman and chief executive of Bentley Motors, said: “Bentley has been at the forefront of luxury Grand Touring for nearly one hundred years. The new, third-generation Continental GT is the pinnacle of our design and engineering achievements and marks the next step in Bentley’s journey.
“We are the world leader in luxury mobility and our products and services define new luxury in the automotive world. The new Continental GT encapsulates our desire to innovate as well as celebrate our heritage and take the Bentley ownership experience to the next, unparalleled level.”
At the heart of the new Continental GT sits an all-new, enhanced version of Bentley’s renowned 6.0-litre, twin-turbocharged W12 TSI engine, mated, for the first time, to a dual-clutch eight-speed transmission, for faster, more efficient gear changes.
A new, technically advanced, adaptive chassis uses Bentley’s intelligent 48-volt Dynamic Ride System to ensure a responsive ride and exceptional handling and refinement in all road conditions. The new system controls ride comfort and lateral roll, cushioning passengers from excessive movement as well as making the car feel effortlessly precise.
The muscular exterior design, created using revolutionary technology, results in a lightweight, yet stiff, body. The engine is positioned further back to improve weight distribution, resulting in driver-focused, dynamic performance.
Offering four seats and improved luggage capacity for genuine real-world usability, the new Bentley Continental GT’s luxurious cabin is packed with exquisite details such as a new ‘diamond in diamond’ leather design. In addition, significant work has gone into harmonising the extensive portfolio of 15 colours across hides and carpets.
The new Continental GT also showcases major evolutions in Bentley’s unique application of technology. An advanced, fully digital, driver-focused instrument panel and Bentley Rotating Display for the driver are among the suite of innovations. The latter features an impressive 12.3” touchscreen housed in a three-sided unit, which revolves the veneer to reveal the touchscreen as well as three elegant analogue dials.
The interior design of the Continental GT is tailored specifically to the modern luxury customer, with unrivalled attention to detail that creates an effortless ownership experience. The cabin seamlessly integrates cutting-edge onboard technology with the finest handcrafted natural materials. The result is an exquisite, harmonised, connected and luxurious space.
The new Continental GT will make its global debut at the IAA Frankfurt Motor Show between 12 and 24 September, 2017.
The Evolution of Bentley’s Famous Design DNA
The exterior design of the new Continental GT is based on a bold new vision that is unmistakably Bentley. The all-new body and materials save more than 80 kg over the previous Continental W12 body.
While the Continental GT retains the classic elegance that made its forebear so popular, the form of the new car is more sculptural and sharply defined and takes much of its inspiration from the critically acclaimed EXP 10 Speed 6 concept car.
To allow for such a bold reimagining of the Continental GT, the aluminium skin has been crafted using Super Formed technology – a precision technique working with aluminium heated to 500°C which has previously been used on Bentley fenders. This method allows designers to invoke more complex, sharply defined body lines and a deeper, sculpted haunch muscle.
The Continental GT is the first production car ever to have an entire body side made from the Super Formed process.
The Continental GT’s profile is longer and lower due in part to the positioning of the front wheels 135 mm further forward, which in turn allows the bonnet to be extended and the nose to be lowered. However, the key signature lines of the original Continental still dominate, with the ‘power line’ travelling from the headlights to the muscular rear haunch.
The rear of the car is a radical styling departure, with the taillights now shaped into ellipses, reflecting the silhouette of the exhaust tail pipes below them.
The lighting on the Continental GT uses the latest LED Matrix technology, but it is the design of the head lamps that truly sets them apart. Inspired by the finest cut-crystal glasses, the internal surfaces are transparent with sharply defined edges that catch the light like a diamond.
The result is similar to that of an illuminated gem – an effect which is magnified when the optional welcome sequence gradually illuminates the headlights as you approach the car. The taillights also feature the cut-crystal effect, highlighting the three-dimensional depth of the optics.
The new Continental GT has 21” wheels as standard, with two styles available, reflecting in turn the model’s elegant and sporting characters. A 22” lightweight, forged wheel is also offered, alongside a hand-finished option, which allows for a twisted polished finish.
In another example of Bentley’s exacting attention to detail, and the unique way in which Bentley design often serves a dual engineering purpose, the elliptical exhausts have a complex perforated sleeve which adds visual detail but also reduces the exhaust temperature.
The new Continental GT customer has a class-leading portfolio of 17 exterior paint colours to choose from – carefully selected to complement the character and lines of the car. In addition, a limited extended range of colours will be offered at launch, as well as the option of full bespoke colour-matching for Bentley customers.
The Finest Handcrafted Cabin: A World of Hidden Delights
The interior of the new Continental GT showcases Bentley’s unrivalled expertise in the authentic use of materials, from the highest-quality natural leathers, to rare, sustainably sourced veneers – including Koa, Bentley’s newest veneer – and hand-polished chrome details. For the first time, unique dual-veneer options are offered. Over 10 square metres of wood are used in each Continental GT, and it takes nine hours to create and fit the wooden inlays by hand.
The exquisitely styled dashboard of the new Continental GT is sculpted by long, flowing wings that mirror the shape of the Bentley badge. A floating leather top flows seamlessly to the doors.
The centre console is finished to match the lower fascia, but can be specified in a new technical finish that is inspired by the delicate mechanical surfacing inside the finest automatic Swiss watches, known as Côtes de Genève. This surface – a first in the automotive world – is machined onto 0.6 mm-thick aluminium and is created by machining from side to side to create a linear pattern. Each row is 5 mm wide and machined at an angle to give a truly three-dimensional finish, with each pass of the machine making a minute step of 0.5 mm.
New types of luxurious haptic finishes adorn the interior of the Continental GT for greater sensory, as well as visual, enjoyment. In some areas, pillow knurling replaces the traditional mechanical knurling, for a softer, more refined feel on switches and controls, while diamond knurling adds a luxurious touch using a detailed three-dimensional faceted surface.
The new knurling design is available on the iconic Bullseye vents, bezels and other primary control rotaries, and not only gives a finely faceted visual impact but provides a precise technical feel when operating the controls.
Another hidden delight is the addition of bronze inserts between surfaces on the primary controls, which adds a level of fine detailing never seen before.
The 20-way adjustable seats in the new Continental GT set new industry standards in comfort and refinement. Smooth centre panels allow maximum efficiency for the cooling, heating and massage functions, while the bolsters retain the signature Bentley quilting.
A new, unique quilt is also available: called a ‘diamond in diamond’ quilt, the effect is of a floating quilted surface in a sea of leather, which is extraordinarily soft to touch. The new interior pattern features both stitching and embroidery. The inner diamonds are embroidered, using a specially-designed machine that balances high speed with quality. Eighteen months were spent developing the embroidery, individually optimising and programming the exact alignment of each one of the 712 stitches that make up each diamond shape – an unrivalled attention to detail.
A choice of three audio systems is offered in the new Continental GT. The standard system features 10 speakers and 650 Watts, while a Bang & Olufsen 1,500 W, 16-speaker system with illuminated speaker grilles is aimed at lifestyle-oriented customers. The new Bang & Olufsen installation benefits from the first automotive application of the BeoSonic system – a new way for tone setting with a simple, intuitive one-touch user interface.
A Naim 2,200 W, 18-speaker system with Active Bass Transducers built into the front seats and eight sound modes is offered for the true audiophile.
In order to ensure optimal audio enjoyment, laminated acoustic glass is used for the windscreen and side windows, resulting in a nine-decibel reduction in exterior noise ingress versus the outgoing model.
Behind the wheel, the technological advancements in the new Continental GT are striking. The driver-orientated instrument panel is now fully digital and configurable by the driver. While the main dials appear to be real, they are in fact digital graphics designed to look three-dimensional. This display can show information from across the infotainment system including satellite-navigation information.
The Continental GT features the innovative and industry-first Bentley Rotating Display. At first glance there appears to be no screen in the centre of the dashboard. Instead, the veneer flows uninterrupted across the dashboard, while a thin chrome bezel behind the steering wheel surrounds a digital instrument display.
When the engine start button is pressed, however, the veneer in the middle of the dashboard glides silently forward and rotates to reveal Bentley’s largest-ever touchscreen, a 12.3” high-definition-quality digital MMI display, elegantly designed by Bentley with a customer-configurable home screen with three windows able to display the driver’s preferred functions, for example, navigation, media and telephone.
The user interface is designed to be akin to a modern mobile phone and menus are structured to be instantly intuitive.
The third side on the Bentley Rotating Display reveals three elegant analogue dials displaying outside temperature, a compass and chronometer. Such an innovative use of traditional elements underscores Bentley’s unique commitment to the past and the future, and offers customers the choice of digital or analogue display or clean, calm cabin.
The new Continental benefits from features designed to keep both driver and passengers connected at all times. Apple CarPlay, the smartest and quickest way to integrate the functionality of Apple devices in a car is connected via a USB port.
Customer journeys are streamlined with features designed to improve navigation. Google point of interest search makes finding unusual destinations simple, while real time traffic information keeps the driver informed of current length or changes in congestion. In emergency situations, Private eCall provides instant access to emergency services for ultimate peace of mind when travelling.
Sublime Power: The Beating Heart of Bentley
The new Continental GT is offered at launch with an enhanced version of Bentley’s peerless 6.0-litre, W12 TSI engine that sets a new benchmark in performance.
Designed, developed and handbuilt in Crewe, the W12 TSI engine is the most advanced 12-cylinder engine in the world. The unique ‘W’ configuration means that the engine is 24 per cent shorter than an equivalent V12, benefitting weight distribution and maximising usable cabin space.
The new powertrain uses the very latest engine management technology, with 300 million software calculations per second. It produces 635 PS (626 bhp) and 900 Nm (664 lb.ft.) of torque, and accelerates the new Continental GT to 100 km/h in 3.7 seconds (0-60 mph in 3.6 seconds), and on to a top speed of 333 km/h (207 mph)*.
A dedicated Sport Launch mode delivers maximum acceleration through careful clutch pressure sensing and pre-loading when a race-style start is required by the driver.
The W12 TSI combines high-pressure direct fuel injection with low-pressure injection. The combination of these two systems maximises refinement, lowers particulate emissions and optimises power and torque delivery. At 278 g/km CO2 (a 16 per cent improvement over the previous Continental GT), the engine also meets Phase 2 of Euro 6 and US ULEV 125 (LEV3) emissions targets.
The new engine utilises Start-Stop technology and, in Bentley’s advanced application, coasting is also made possible. The engine rests not only when the vehicle is stationary but also at near-to-stop speeds.
Bentley’s Variable Displacement system shuts down half of the engine under defined conditions. Intake and exhaust valves, fuel injection and ignition are all shut down on defined cylinders, with the engine running as a six-cylinder for improved efficiency.
Significantly, a new dual-mass flywheel replaces the torque converter, to dampen out the oscillations of the driveline and provide a fittingly smooth power delivery for luxury touring.
The dual-clutch eight-speed transmission provides smooth acceleration, and impressively quick gearshifts, both hallmarks of the Continental GT’s dynamic character, as well as improved combined fuel economy (23.2 mpg or 12.2 L/100 km versus the previous model’s 19.9 mpg or 14.2 L/100 km).
Shift times are variable and depend on the selected driving mode. In Sport mode, shifts are seemingly instantaneous to deliver uninterrupted torque delivery and maximum acceleration performance. In Comfort mode, shifts are deliberately relaxed to allow for a seamless and imperceptible gear change.
Maximum speed is reached in seventh gear, with eighth gear acting as an overdrive gear for relaxed cruising.
A new Active All-Wheel-Drive System replaces the traditional 40:60 power delivery split between front and rear wheels respectively, instead varying the front-to-rear torque split dependent upon the driving situation. The vehicle will use rear-wheel drive as much as possible during normal driving for optimum efficiency and dynamic performance.
Based on the conditions and the driver’s behaviour, the system will send drive to the front axle as required. This reduces the understeer effect from fixed all-wheel drive, as well as increasing driver engagement for those who revel in the dynamic attributes of the Continental GT.
Unrivalled Grand Touring Ride and Handling
The third generation of Continental GT features Bentley Dynamic Ride, an advanced 48-volt roll control system for unrivalled car control. The system controls and adjusts the electronic actuators on the anti-roll bar of each axle and so improves handling and ride comfort, as well as making the car feel lighter and more precise.
This system instantly counteracts lateral rolling forces when cornering and ensures maximum tyre-to-road contact to deliver class-leading ride comfort and exceptional handling.
While conventional anti-roll bars present a compromise between body control and ride comfort, Bentley’s active system provides variable torsional resistance, allowing the Continental GT to be both dynamically capable and comfortable for all occupants at all times. The use of a 48-volt system results in silent, instantaneous responses and sufficient power on hand to deal with all road surfaces.
Through Bentley’s Drive Dynamics Control different modes can be selected: Comfort mode, Bentley mode or Sport mode; the suspension, engine, gearbox and other chassis systems will modify to match the selected drive mode. Alternatively, the driver can personalise his or her own dynamic settings.
The air suspension on the new Continental GT is revised and uses three-chamber air springs which give the car 60 per cent more air volume in the softest setting than the previous model. This allowed Bentley’s engineers more scope for tuning the suspension to improve the ride comfort and dynamic character of the car. The system offers the scope to vary from sporting spring stiffness to luxury limousine refinement depending upon which mode the driver has selected.
Electric Power-Assisted Steering (EPAS) is also featured on the Continental GT. The new system improves feedback to the driver, while providing isolation from unwanted road disturbances. The steering system features a variable rack ratio, allowing increased response with higher steering angles to aid manoeuverability whilst maintaining excellent stability at high speeds. The introduction of EPAS also allows the Continental GT to be offered with a wide range of Driver Assistance features including Active Lane Assist, Traffic Jam Assist and Park Assist.
Another key feature is the latest-generation Continuous Damping Control (CDC), which constantly adjusts the damper forces to optimise comfort. The system continually measures the velocity and distance between the wheels and the body at each corner and also adjusts the air volume in the springs if necessary to ensure the optimum balance of comfort and handling. Both front and rear axles are of a lightweight aluminium construction, with multilink design at the front and rear.
The brakes, as always on the Continental GT, are bigger on the front axle, with a 15 mm increase in size to 420 mm to match the increased performance.
The exhaust tail pipes have also been revised, and now have an adaptive valve for greater tuning potential.
Bentley Personalisation Options and Mulliner Bespoke
The all-new Continental GT redefines personalisation and bespoke luxury. Paint, leather, veneer and lifestyle options are virtually unlimited and tailored to the individual.
The standard palette alone comprises 17 exterior paint colours, with up to 70 hues available in the extended range. There are also 15 luxurious carpet options, eight different handcrafted veneers (with a further four dual-veneer options) and 15 choices of interior trim hide, which means that customers are able to specify their own choice of luxury finish.
Two technology option packs are offered at launch: City Specification for urban journeys and the Touring Specification for long-distance driving, both curated to optimise the customer experience. City Specification includes hands-free boot opening, pedestrian warning, traffic-sign recognition and city braking systems as well as a top-view camera. The Touring Specification pack, meanwhile, offers adaptive cruise control with traffic-jam assist, active lane assist, a heads-up display, night vision with an infrared camera, and pre-sense braking.
The Mulliner Driving Specification adds a more sporting look to the car with 22” lightweight forged alloy wheels, unique ‘diamond in diamond’ quilting, embroidered Bentley emblems, additional veneer options, a jewelled-finish fuel filler, sports pedals and indented leather headliner. Customers can also choose personalised stitching in the front and rear of the car and personalised treadplates.
As with all Bentleys, the Continental GT can also be handed over to the highly skilled and dedicated craftspeople at Mulliner, Bentley’s personal commissioning division, who will respond to bespoke customer requirements.
Extreme Conditions: Global Testing for the Perfect Grand Tourer
Bentley’s highly skilled engineers have put the new Continental GT through the extraordinary rigours of extreme hot and cold weather testing – as well as durability tests – around the globe to ensure the new Grand Tourer triumphs in all driving conditions, covering nearly one million kilometres.
A demanding and thorough development drive programme put the new Continental GT through cold-climate testing in polar areas, hot-weather testing in America and durability testing on the grueling roads in South Africa; as well as tests in the Middle East, China and Europe.
A team of expert Bentley development engineers led the testing in Sweden for serious sub-zero driving on frozen lakes and in snow. In America, testing also took place in the below sea-level ‘oven’ of Death Valley with temperatures approaching 50 degrees Celsius for a trial covering thousands of kilometres.
Energy-Efficient Production Using Sustainable Materials
Since 2003 more than 66,000 Bentley Continental GTs have been handcrafted in the factory in Crewe, England. Over that period the style, technology and engineering behind the car have been constantly evolving, and the vehicles produced in Crewe have become ever more efficient.
Similarly, the production techniques utilised in Crewe have become significantly more efficient over that time. The all-new Continental GT is being produced in a factory where up to 40 per cent of the electricity needs are met by 20,815 solar panels covering over 34,500 square metres of factory roof space. The installation was the largest of its kind in the UK when first put in place. The solar panels provide a capacity of 5.1 megawatts and contribute to a CO2 reduction of 2,500 tonnes per year.
Following significant reductions in key environmental areas, Bentley has become the first UK automotive manufacturer to be awarded the Carbon Trust Standards for carbon, water and waste respectively. The Crewe headquarters was the first UK automotive plant to achieve the internationally recognised ISO 14001 environmental and ISO 50001 energy management standards.
Bentley’s desire to offer customers the very best cars in the world – with unsurpassed levels of luxury and performance – goes hand-in-hand with a determination to enhance significantly fuel economy, reduce emissions and develop highly advanced, sustainable drive technologies for the future.
- ENDS -
Bentley Motors is the most sought after luxury car brand in the world. The company’s headquarters in Crewe is home to all of its operations including design, R&D, engineering and production of the company’s four model lines – Continental, Flying Spur, Bentayga and Mulsanne. The combination of fine craftsmanship, using skills that have been handed down through generations, alongside engineering expertise and cutting-edge technology is unique to UK luxury car brands such as Bentley. It is also an example of high-value British manufacturing at its best. Bentley employs around 4,000 people at Crewe.
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