Bentley Unveils Most Powerful Model Ever, the Continental GT Speed

Hybrid powertrain claims higher performance, lower complexity and emissions and better weight distribution for both coupé and convertible models.

Paul Myles, European Editor

June 27, 2024

2 Min Read
Bentley Continental GTC Speed 2024
Bentley Continental GTC Speed powered by new hybrid system.

Bentley finally unveils its fourth-generation Continental GT Speed boasting the highest levels of performance of any road-going model ever produced by the marque.

Its powertrain employs a 4.0L flat-plane crank gasoline V-8 coupled with an electric motor and lithium-ion battery pack claiming a maximum system output of 771 hp and 737 lb.-ft. (1,000 Nm) of torque. Claimed performance is a 0-to-62 mph (100 km/h) of 3.1 seconds and a top speed of more than 208 mph (335 km/h). Claimed system emissions for the big car are 29 g/km of CO2 on the WLTP drive cycle.

The system also provides 50 miles (80 km) of usable electric-only range on the EU drive cycle, and a total range of 534 miles (860 km). Powertrain benefits of the 400V hybrid system boost torque by 11% compared to the outgoing W-12-powered Continental GT Speed, and power by 19%.

Bentley’s system contains three key elements. The new 591-hp, 590 lb.-ft. (800 Nm) V-8 has no traditional vacuum system and produces 350 bar (5,076 psi) fuel injection pressure, up from from 200 bar (2,901 psi) on the previous model, and claims cleaner combustion and improved emissions.

With the e-motor offsetting turbo lag, twin single-scroll turbochargers are used to reduce complexity, allow a hotter running temperature and reduce emissions still further. As a consequence, no cylinder deactivation hardware is required with the engine switching off completely when in all-electric mode.

Its electric motor claims a further 180 hp and 332 lb.-ft. (450 Nm) of torque and is housed within the transmission assembly, providing torque-fill at low engine speed and does the same during gear shifts for extra smoothness.

The 25.9-kWh battery, which is mounted behind the rear axle to aid weight distribution. This now achieves a weight distribution of 49:51 to enhance the vehicle’s handling, albeit the electrified components of the powertrain add around 440 lbs. (200 kg) to the vehicle’s weight compared to the outgoing model.

Full-electric mode can be deployed at speeds of up to 87 mph (140 km/h) with throttle applications of up to 75%. The battery can be fully recharged in less than three hours with 11-kW peak charging power.

The performance of the powertrain is matched by a new chassis system, with new two-chamber air springs paired with new dual-valve dampers, along with Bentley Dynamic Ride (48V active anti-roll control), eLSD and torque vectoring.

In a first for the model, both the coupé Continental GT and convertible Continental GTC are being launched concurrently and both will be crafted entirely by hand at Bentley’s Dream Factory in Crewe, England. Production and deliveries are due to begin in Q3.

About the Author(s)

Paul Myles

European Editor, Informa Group

Paul Myles is an award-winning journalist based in Europe covering all aspects of the automotive industry. He has a wealth of experience in the field working at specialist, national and international levels.

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