Bentley Continental GT Speed
Powered by Bentley’s iconic 6-litre twin-turbo W12 engine, the GT Speed develops 625 PS (616 bhp) at 6000 rev/min – up 50 PS versus the standard Continental GT - with 800 Nm (590 lb.ft) of torque available from 2000 to 5000 rev/min (up 100 Nm) for instantly accessible high performance. Coupled with a new ZF eight-speed close-ratio automatic transmission and state-of-the-art engine management software, the GT Speed dispatches the zero-to-sixty sprint in 4.0 seconds (0-100 km/h in 4.2s), reaching 100 mph (160 km/h) from a standing start in just 9.0 seconds. In-gear acceleration is equally breath-taking.
In the Bentley Speed tradition, outstanding performance is matched by an enhanced chassis with up-rated springs, anti-roll bars and bushes, a lowered ride height (by 10mm front and rear) together with re-tuning of the electronically controlled damping and steering systems.
However, this newest, most powerful addition to the Continental stable still displays the refinement and suppleness that makes a Bentley unique. Even the exhaust note, deeper and more exhilarating under hard acceleration, remains civilized and refined during high-speed cruising.
Its all-wheel-drive system, biased 60:40 in favor of the rear, offers reassuring stability and the potential to access the prodigious performance all year round in virtually any weather conditions or road surface.
Subtle signature design cues distinguish the GT Speed from its stable-mates, including 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. This now includes the exclusive-to-Speed dark tint aluminum as well as carbon fiber. The result is a highly distinctive, contemporary, sporting, luxury coupe.
The 575 PS (567 bhp) W12 powertrain of the Continental GT coupe and GTC convertible models also benefits from enhancements made to the more powerful GT Speed. In addition to the new engine management system and eight-speed transmission, all W12 engines now feature an energy recuperation system. Together, these deliver a 12% improvement in fuel economy and CO2 emissions across the GT W12 range and a 10% improvement for the GTC W12.
GT Speed – sophisticated technology for extreme performance
The W12 engine is mated to a ZF eight-speed transmission for the first time. Designed to handle the extreme levels of torque generated by the W12, the transmission cuts acceleration times by ensuring that the engine is always at the ideal speed for peak torque delivery. This state-of-the-art transmission also features “Block Shifting” technology, capable of shifting directly from (for example) 8th gear to 4th gear for instantaneous response and thunderous acceleration.
The combination of the new transmission and the uprated engine results in breath-taking supercar performance. The sprint from 0-60 mph takes just 4.0 seconds (0-100 km/h in 4.2 seconds) and the relentless acceleration continues to a top speed of 205 mph (330 km/h). 0-100 mph is dispatched in a mere 9.0 seconds – a level of performance akin to the previous generation Continental Supersports, and almost a full second quicker than the updated 575 PS Continental GT.
The exhaust system of the new GT Speed has been developed from the free-breathing, low back pressure design first used on the Continental Supersports Ice Speed Record car. The new exhaust produces a sportier, more intense baritone sound under hard acceleration without sacrificing a relaxed, refined and quiet tone during cruising conditions.
Up to 12% efficiency improvement for all two-door Continentals
The new eight-speed transmission delivers six per cent of the total efficiency gain. The eight close-ratios ensure that the engine operates in its most efficient range during relaxed driving, while the very latest software developments ensure that gear changes are both fast and imperceptibly smooth.
The new transmission, together with the ME17 engine management system, is fitted to the standard Continental GT and GTC models from now.
The W12 engine features recuperation for the first time, delivering a 1.6 per cent reduction in CO2 emissions alone. Recuperation is a technology involving precise control of the vehicle’s electrical system and alternator to allow flexible generation of electricity. The output of the alternator is increased during low engine load conditions, for example when decelerating, with the excess electrical energy stored in the car’s battery. When the engine is then under load, the alternator output is reduced, increasing overall engine efficiency while the battery provides the previously stored energy to compensate.
Reflecting the improvements in efficiency, the Continental GT and GT Speed now feature a combined cycle fuel economy of 19.5 mpg (14.5 liters/100km) and CO2 emissions of 338 g/km (subject to certification) – outstanding figures for a 12-cylinder grand tourer. Meanwhile, the GTC has a combined cycle fuel economy of 19.0 mpg (14.9 liters/100km) and CO2 emissions of 347 g/km.
The efficiency improvements also benefit the performance of the standard GT and GTC models. The standard 575 PS GT now takes just 4.3 seconds to accelerate from zero to 60 mph (0-100 km/h in 4.5s) with 100 mph (160 km/h) reached in 9.8 seconds from a standstill. The performance of the Continental GTC is equally exhilarating – 0-60 mph in 4.4 seconds (0-100 km/h in 4.7s) and 0-100 mph (and 0-160 km/h) in 10.3 seconds.
GT Speed – lowered, uprated suspension for agility, comfort and refinement
The self-leveling system constantly monitors ride height and damping according to road conditions, and positions the car with a ride height 10mm lower than the standard Continental GT. Bentley’s chassis engineers have also fitted stiffer suspension bushes for sharp, communicative handling and uprated anti-roll bars to optimize the handling balance.
Software changes are also wide-ranging, combining to use the revised suspension hardware to deliver an exciting but refined experience. Steering and suspension control systems receive revised calibrations.
Sophisticated stability control, optimized for driver involvement
Outstanding stopping power across the Continental range
All-wheel drive – a performance car for all seasons
Sculpted coachwork with signature Speed design cues
Advanced superforming technology uses high temperatures and pressurized air to shape the front fenders into exquisite, unbroken curves in extremely durable aerospace-grade 5083 aluminum alloy. The latest body construction techniques deliver crisply defined feature lines and form to every area of the exterior design. The flowing lines and curves – inspired by the original 1950s R-Type Continental – create highly distinct surfaces, bringing the feel of a truly coachbuilt car to the Continental family.
For the GT Speed, these elegant shapes are enhanced with a suite of signature design cues. A new 9.5J x 21” ten twin-spoke wheel design is exclusive to GT Speed, available in bright painted or dark tint finishes, and fitted with 275/35 ZR21 tires. Dark tint radiator matrix and front bumper grilles enhance the air intakes that pay homage to the Le Mans winning Bentleys of the 1920s to give the front of the new GT Speed a more aggressive, sporting look.
At the rear of the car, new rifled exhaust tailpipes are fitted exclusively to GT Speed and are complemented by chrome rear lamp bezels that are also introduced on Continental GT and GTC models. Also fitted as standard to all 6.0 liter Continental models are new W12 badges located below the muscular power line on the front fenders. Beneath the bonnet, the twin turbocharged intake manifolds of the Speed model are uniquely powder-coated with a black finish. GT Speed treadplates complete the set of exterior design cues.
Mulliner Styling Specification in polished carbon fiber
Complementary features include carbon fiber door mirror cowls, the finishing of the standard rear spoiler in carbon fiber and the fitment of the 21” “Elegant” wheels in a unique black finish.
As well as the 17 exterior paint finishes available as standard to the Continental models, a range of almost 100 additional paint options is available including solid, metallic, pearlescent and satin finishes. Further extending the art-of-the-possible, Bentley’s specialist paint team can also create bespoke exterior colors to precisely match customer requirements.
GT Speed - distinctive, hand-crafted, contemporary, sporting luxury cabin
As standard, the new GT Speed is specified with Bentley’s luxurious yet sporting Mulliner Driving Specification, which features diamond-quilted, perforated leather hides to all four seats, door trims and rear quarter panels. The cabin headlining is finished in indented leather hide, while optional embroidered Bentley emblems can be specified for the headrests.
The sports gear lever has a classic knurled finish, while the driver uses drilled alloy sports foot pedals. The unique Bentley “Jewel” filler cap is provided as standard, as are Dark Stained Burr Walnut or Piano Black veneers.
With its gleaming, geometrically precise overlapping circles, engine-turned aluminum – also known as ‘engine spin’ – has indelible associations with Bentley sporting success. The dashboard of ‘Old Number One’ – the Speed Six that won two Le Mans 24 Hour races – is crafted from the same material. With such a pedigree it’s natural that Bentley offers two engine spin options for the fascia and consoles – one in Bright Aluminum and the other, unique to the Continental GT Speed, in Dark Tint Aluminum. Its understated shade perfectly complements the dark tint chrome radiator and bumper grilles.
Alternatively, the more recent Bentley Le Mans success is reflected in choosing the Carbon Fiber option for fascia, roof and centre consoles, its satin finish specially developed to reduce unwelcome reflections.
Seventeen different hide colors are available and as with the rest of the Continental family, the interior of the GT Speed can be specified with duo-tone color splits, including one split previously exclusive to GT V8. Contrast stitching throughout, including to the steering wheel, is also available.
ADVANCED INFOTAINMENT TECHNOLOGY
A new feature of the advanced 8-inch touch screen, 30GB on-board Infotainment system is the addition of satellite navigation “Personal Points of Interest”. This allows the user to save places of their choosing (e.g. a specific restaurant) into the system.
The touch screen displays the car’s audio system, telephone, ride and comfort settings and navigation information, which uses both the hard-disc drive and a DVD player to access route data.
An eight-speaker sound system is offered as standard employing the latest Balanced Mode Radiator technology. These unique compact, flat-panel speakers provide exceptional clarity across the audible spectrum and a very wide frequency range. The 11-speaker Naim for Bentley system – created exclusively by British audiophiles Naim – is available across the Continental range.
Music can be played and controlled directly from an iPod® as well as from a six-disc CD changer, SD card reader or directly from the car’s hard-disc drive, which can store up to 15GB of music. DAB digital radio is also available in regions where the infrastructure supports it.
* Fuel consumption figures are provisional and subject to Type Approval.
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