New Bentley Continental GT
8th September, 2010
- New, sculptured exterior exudes quality and design integrity
- Contemporary, hand-crafted cabin
- More powerful W12 engine at launch with FlexFuel capability
- A new high-efficiency V8 from late 2011
- Dynamic, engaging driving experience
For Crewe’s design and engineering teams, the new Continental GT coupe is an opportunity to set a bold
and exciting direction for one of Bentley’s most revered names – the Continental. The seminal and highly
successful Continental GT introduced in 2003 represented the first step in Bentley’s renaissance and
defined a whole new market segment. It was a luxury GT offering excellent usability that remained true to
the Bentley grand touring spirit.
Now the new Continental GT 4-seat coupe builds on the success of its iconic predecessor, capturing that
GT spirit but with even higher standards of design, engineering, luxury, craftsmanship, dynamic
performance, everyday practicality and refinement.
A beautifully sculptured new body gives the Bentley Continental GT coupe an even crisper, more defined
appearance. The contemporary interior offers new levels of cabin design, comfort and hand-crafted luxury.
The seats, for example, provide even greater support and rear legroom; a sweeping dashboard even more
style and modernity. The new touchscreen infotainment system features state-of-the-art navigation, Google
Maps and entertainment while the latest Balanced Mode Radiator speaker technology and Dirac Dimensions™
digital sound processing deliver enhanced audio quality.
Bentley’s acclaimed 6-litre, 12-cylinder, twin-turbocharged powertrain now has a raised power output
of 423 kW (567 bhp/575 PS) and 700 Nm (516lb ft) of torque and this is matched to a new Quickshift
transmission which enables double downshifts. Thanks to advanced FlexFuel technology it can also run on
both standard unleaded petrol and sustainable bioethanol (up to E85) or any mix of the two.
In late 2011 an all-new, high-output 8-cylinder engine will also be available to order. This advanced
power unit will deliver a 40 per cent reduction in emissions compared with the W12 engine and will offer
a class-leading CO2 emissions-to-power ratio with Bentley levels of performance and refinement.
Both engines are coupled to an all-wheel drive system with a sporty 40:60 rear-torque bias (compared
with the 50:50 bias of the original Continental GT), minimising understeer during hard cornering and
allowing the experienced driver to control the car’s line and balance via precise throttle control.
“The new Continental GT is an automotive work of art, with superb craftsmanship and elegant,
contemporary design. It drives like a super car, but without the usual sacrifices in ride or practicality.
It is a car that you can enjoy every moment of every day.” said Dr Franz-Josef Paefgen, Chairman and
THE NEW BENTLEY CONTINENTAL GT COUPE – AT A GLANCE
Sculptured exterior design
- Advanced production techniques such as aluminium Super Forming (front guards and boot lid) allow for
a more sculpted body and sharp ‘power lines’
- Unique jewelled headlamps with LED daytime-running lights
- More upright matrix radiator grille and new ‘double horseshoe’ rear profile first shown on the
flagship Bentley Mulsanne
Contemporary, hand-crafted cabin
- New interior with a bold, sweeping dashboard and instrument panel finished in premium, soft-touch
- Distinctive ‘cobra’-design seats for added comfort and enhanced rear cabin space
- A new touchscreen, 30GB infotainment system introduces advanced satellite navigation with dynamic
route guidance, seven-digit postcode entry and Google Map compatibility (market specific)
- Audio systems feature the latest wide frequency Balance Mode Radiator speakers as standard
- Revolutionary Dirac Dimensions™ DSP for exceptional sound reproduction (Naim for Bentley premium
More powerful W12 and new high-efficiency V8 FlexFuel engines
- 6-litre W12 engine twin-turbocharged engine produces 423 kW (567 bhp/575 PS) and 700 Nm (516lb ft)
- 0-100 km/h in 4.6 seconds (0 – 60 mph in 4.4 seconds)
- 0-160 km/h in 10.2 seconds (0 -100 mph in 10.2 seconds)
- Top speed of 318 km/h (198 mph)
- Overall weight saving of 65 kg (143 lb) versus predecessor
- New high-output, high-efficiency V8 engine due for release in late 2011.
Dynamic Bentley driving experience
- ZF 6HP28 transmission with ‘Quickshift’ system that cuts shift times by 50% and enables double
- New 40:60 rear-biased torque split for the all-wheel drive system reduces understeer when
powering out of bends and provides for better modulation of line and attitude by ‘throttle steering’
- Increased front and rear track improves grip and stability
- Advanced ESC system fully exploits the potential of the more powerful W12 engine and improved
- 20” and (optional) 21” wheels
SCULPTURED EXTERIOR EXUDES QUALITY AND DESIGN INTEGRITY
Inspired by the iconic Bentleys of the past, Bentley’s design team under the leadership of Director
of Design, Dirk van Braeckel, has provided a thoroughly modern, sculptured body, built with advanced
production technologies to ensure the highest standards of quality and body integrity.
Aluminium Super Forming technology is employed to style the front guards and the boot lid. This
process heats the aluminium panels to nearly 500 degrees Celsius before shaping them by air pressure.
By using a single sheet of aluminium, no seams or welding are required.
The latest body construction techniques deliver crisp, highly defined feature lines and form to
every area of the exterior design. The familiar power lines and rear haunches – echoes of the
original 1950s R-Type Continental – now have even sharper radii to provide highly distinct surfaces,
bringing the feel of a truly coachbuilt car to the new coupe.
The GT coupe’s new look is bolder than ever. The classic Bentley matrix radiator grille is more
upright, while the new headlamp design, in traditional four-lamp format, has exquisite jewel-like
detailing including eye-catching, LED daylight-running lamps.
At the rear, Bentley signature ‘floating’ LED lamps extend around the corners of the guards,
emphasising the new coupe’s width and purposeful stance. The track is wider by 41 mm at the front
and 48 mm at the rear than the previous model. The bootlid design has a powerful ‘double horse-shoe’
motif, reminiscent of the new Bentley Mulsanne, while flared elliptical exhaust tailpipes reinforce
the new GT’s sporting credentials.
The shape of the new GT coupe’s body is also more aerodynamic following extensive wind tunnel
analysis. In conjunction with a range of extensive underbody refinements (including wheel arch and
exhaust aerodynamic aids) the GT’s coefficient of drag has been reduced to 0.33Cd and the lift at
the front and rear axles has also been reduced to enable greater stability at higher speeds.
The new GT is specified with 20-inch alloy wheels as standard, with, for the first time on the
Continental 'family', the option to upgrade to 21-inch designs. Three styles of wheel are offered –
a 20-inch five-spoke version and two 21-inch Elegant and split-rim Sports variations, which come in
a variety of chromed and painted finishes.
“The new GT coupe has an even stronger sporting character than ever before. It is an
exceptionally refined and comfortable 2+2 Grand Tourer but with the heart, soul and looks of a super
car.” indicated Dirk van Braeckel, Director of Design.
CONTEMPORARY, HAND-CRAFTED CABIN WITH BENTLEY’S RENOWNED REFINEMENT
With an entirely hand-crafted interior, the Continental GT’s cabin sets new standards in
refinement and luxury to provide a stylish space in which up to four people can relax in total
The instrument panel and dashboard subtly echo the flying wings of the Bentley motif and are
fashioned from the highest quality soft-touch leathers. New touchscreen technology and chrome-bezelled
dials are housed within this dynamic cockpit area, which rises from the centre console in the form of
dramatically surfaced ’wing’ buttresses.
The striking and unique ‘Cobra’ design seats are supremely comfortable thanks to the introduction
of the latest body-supporting materials which use complex foams to provide softness at first touch but
with excellent support over longer journeys.
The seats can be specified with front-seat ventilation as well as a state-of-the-art massage system
with 10 individual massage cells and individual side airbags are provided as standard for all
Front seatbelts feature a new electrically-operated automatic presenter, making buckling-up
effortless. Driver knee airbags are standard fitment.
The new Continental GT offers superb everyday usability. The new slim-line front seats with
scalloped backs also provide a further 46 mm of legroom for back-seat passengers and easy access to the
No other Grand Tourer offers such impressive levels of refinement thanks to the advanced
noise-suppression technology that includes acoustic glazing, under-floor shields and hidden
anti-vibration panels throughout the interior.
The cabin is trimmed with soft-touch leathers, a full range of wood veneers, cool-touch metals and
deep-pile carpets – all hand-crafted in Bentley’s unrivalled workshops at the factory in Crewe, England.
The attention to detail even extends to applying a UV stabiliser to the wood veneers to protect from
bleaching, thus ensuring they can be enjoyed as new for decades to come.
Every leather hide is still sewn under the watchful eye of Bentley’s highly skilled craftsmen and
women. By incorporating ingenious, angled ‘ramps’ behind the leather, the interior designers have
provided sharp, well-defined styling lines, while maintaining a soft-touch.
Other simple yet practical functions include a powered boot as standard, Electronic Park Brake with
Move Off Assist and newly designed, leather-lined door stowage bins with an integrated bottle holder.
Perhaps the most stylish new storage device in the new Continental GT is the exquisitely designed,
folding, removable case designed to hold items such as keys and pens and which can also be slipped into
a pocket or bag. Crafted from veneers to match those of the coupe’s interior, the case (available as a
cost option) is finished with inlaid Bentley wings, satin-chromed and leather-lined, and is secured in
a recess above the twin drinks holders in the centre console.
“The new GT coupe interior combines form, practicality and innovation. Our task was to translate
the original design sketches for the car’s cabin – which were quite extreme, almost revolutionary for
a Bentley – into the final design. The result is a cockpit that moves the Continental GT on to the next
generation.” said Darren Day, Senior Designer.
CLASS-LEADING INFOTAINMENT SYSTEMS
Complementing its contemporary cabin, the new Continental GT also features advanced new touchscreen
technology with rich map imagery and a 30GB on board hard drive.
The 8-inch screen displays the car’s audio system, telephone, ride and comfort settings and the very
latest navigation system, which uses both an in-car hard-disc drive and a DVD player to access route
data. It also employs dynamic navigation to guide you around areas of heavy traffic, finds destinations
using geo-tagged photos from an SD memory card and is Google Maps-compatible (market specific).
The infotainment system, with 7 digit postcode entry, uses a combination of touchscreen controls and
classic knurled rotary switches to offer instant usability and crystal-clear feedback. The graphic
interface of the screen is engineered in-house to ensure its visuals are completely in keeping with the
style of the interior. Look closely and you will see that the knurled switches on the screen are
‘virtual’ echoes of the knurled switches below.
The Bentley Continental GT’s new infotainment system also provides the ultimate in in-car audio
entertainment. 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 with a very
wide frequency range.
An 11-speaker Naim for Bentley system – made exclusively for the Continental GT by British
audiophiles Naim – employs revolutionary Dirac Dimensions ™ digital signal processing. This
industry-first technology makes a virtual ‘sound field’ independent of speaker layout to deliver
concert hall-quality sound reproduction for every occupant wherever they may be sitting.
The Continental GT coupe also benefits from telephone and music player connectivity, digital
television (where available) and DVD movie playback. 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.
MORE POWERFUL W12 AND NEW HIGH-OUTPUT, HIGH-EFFICIENCY V8
The Continental GT is set to have a choice of two very distinctive high-performance engines. In
addition to the new 423 kW version of Crewe’s renowned 6.0 litre W12 powertrain, a new high-output
4.0-litre V8 engine option will be introduced in late 2011.
The new 4.0-litre V8 engine honours Bentley’s environmental commitment to deliver a powertrain
that achieves a 40 per cent improvement in CO2 emissions. The new V8 is being designed specifically
by Bentley’s engineers to deliver all the exhilarating power and torque synonymous with the marque.
The new Crewe-built engine will also offer a class-leading CO2 emissions-to-power ratio.
At launch, the new Continental GT coupe is powered by the latest evolution of Bentley’s acclaimed
12-cylinder, 6-litre twin-turbocharged engine, now calibrated to provide even greater performance,
thanks to increases in power, torque and fuel efficiency.
Designed in a unique ‘W’ configuration, it is the most compact and technologically advanced
12-cylinder engine in the world. Four camshafts and 48 valves allow the engine to breathe
effortlessly and help to generate the distinctive Bentley wave of torque. It is also capable of
running on petrol (gasoline), E85 bioethanol or any mix of the two – all from a single tank.
In 2008, Bentley announced a far-reaching environmental programme that included a 15 per cent
improvement in powertrain efficiency and the adoption across the Bentley model range of FlexFuel
technology by 2012. Bentley’s FlexFuel models are capable of delivering potential CO2 reductions
of up to 70 per cent on a ‘well-to-wheel’ basis – the measurement of CO2 released by a fuel from
its production (well) through to its combustion or deployment (wheel).
To ensure that the power and torque generated remain constant (whatever the fuel) an advanced
Fuel Quality Sensor continuously monitors the ratio of the fuels used. It then guides the Engine
Control Unit to adjust the engine’s timing. This provides the seamless power delivery for which
Bentley engines are renowned, and ensures there is no compromise on performance when using fuels
that emits lower CO2 emissions.
Further revisions to the new GT coupe’s engine include low friction, lightweight components
which allow the W12-format engine to rev even more freely, while the latest engine management
system and twin, low-inertia turbochargers are optimised to ensure minimal turbo lag.
Overall, the GT coupe is 65 kg lighter than its predecessor thanks to reductions in all areas
of the car from engine components through to new seats. With its power/torque output raised to 423
kW and 700 Nm – the result is a 6 per cent improvement in the new GT’s power-to weight-ratio,
making it capable of accelerating from zero to 0-100 km/h in 4.6 seconds with a top speed of
The increased power and torque are transmitted to the all-wheel drive system via an uprated
six-speed Quickshift transmission, which halves shift times (to just 200 milliseconds). The revised
gearbox also has the ability to deliver double downshifts (sixth to fourth gear, for example) and
improves acceleration across the entire gear range. To cope with the additional power and torque,
the planetary gear set of the six-speed ZF transmission is also strengthened.
Positive torque during downshifts is achieved through engine and gearbox electronic controller
interaction for extra throttle and fuel injection during the overrun, replicating manual throttle
‘blips’ for precise rev matching. During transmission upshifts, fuel and ignition are cut
momentarily to give faster mechanical shift times through torque reduction, also improving shift
quality and durability.
“The W12’s extra power and torque and Quickshift transmission endow the new GT with instantly
accessible super car performance across the complete rev range. At the same time, Bentley’s
pioneering use of FlexFuel technology underlines our ongoing environmental commitment.” said
Brian Gush, Director, Chassis and Powertrain, Engineering.
ALL-WHEEL DRIVE FOR OPTIMISED RIDE AND HANDLING
Both engines are coupled with a state-of-the-art, all-wheel drive system employing an advanced
Torsen differential. This ensures safe yet dynamic sports car handling in all road conditions and
In the new coupe, the power split has a 40:60 rear bias for a significantly more sporting feel in
terms of handling and mid-corner acceleration. However, it can adjust instantaneously the power
split between the front and rear wheels depending on the available grip. In addition, an uprated
Electronic Stability Control (ESC) system provides additional security and grip whatever your
The new GT’s chassis delivers the optimum ride and handling balance. The wide front and rear
track benefits agility and handling, while solid aluminium cast-forged, high-stiffness front
suspension uprights and aluminium gravity die castings at the rear work in conjunction with a
redesigned front anti-roll bar and retuned spring and damper settings. The result is improved
response and stability at all speeds.
Continuous Damping Control (CDC) constantly monitors the car’s attitude and poise. By adjusting
the suspension settings hundreds of times a second it can provide a remarkably supple ride at low
speeds and increased control as speeds climb. It can also lower the car in ‘V-Max’ mode for
enhanced stability at the highest speeds.
Throughout Bentley’s history, iconic grand tourers have forged the marque’s reputation. In the
1950s the beautiful R-Type Continental set new standards of performance and style. In 2003,
Continental GT revolutionised the luxury coupe market, combining super car performance and dynamism
with remarkable everyday practicality.
Now, the new Continental GT coupe sets even higher standards in every area of design,
craftsmanship and engineering.
“We’ve distilled nearly 90 years of engineering excellence into the new Continental GT coupe.
It represents everything Bentley stands for: breathtaking performance, beautiful design and
unparalleled quality, comfort and luxury.” said Dr. Ulrich Eichhorn, Member of the Board,
TECHNICAL SPECIFICATION - ENGINE
Type: 6-litre twin-turbocharged W12
Max Power: 423 kW @ 6,000 rev/min
Max Torque: 700 Nm @ 1,700 rev/min
ZF 6-speed automatic with quickshift and steering wheel-mounted paddleshift
Driveline: Continuous all-wheel drive (40:60 rear bias)
Front: 405 mm ventilated discs (optional 420 mm Carbon Silicon Carbide, cross drilled)
Rear: 335 mm ventilated discs (optional 356 mm, Carbon Silicon Carbide, cross drilled)
WHEELS AND TYRES
9.5J x 20” (optional 9.5J x 21”)
275/40ZR 20 (optional 275/35 ZR21 linked to option wheels)
Type: rack & pinion, power assisted, speed-sensitive ZF servotronic
Turns lock to lock: 2.6 turns
Turning circle: 11.3 m
Front: Four link double wishbones, computer controlled self-levelling air suspension,
with anti roll-bar.
Rear: Trapezoidal multi-link, computer-controlled self-levelling air suspension, with
Damping: Continuous Damping Control, tuned for dynamic performance.
Wheelbase 2,746 mm / 108.1 in
Overall Length 4,806 mm / 189.2 in
Width (across body) 1,944 mm / 76.5 in
Width (including mirrors) 2,227 mm / 87.7 in
Overall Height 1,404 mm / 55.3 in
Fuel Tank 90 litres / 20 gallons / 24 US gallons
Boot Volume 358 litres / 12.6 cu ft
Kerb Weight (EU) 2,320 kg / 5,115 lb
Gross Vehicle Weight 2,750 kg / 6,063 lb
Top Speed: 318 km/h
0 – 100 km/h: 4.6 secs
0 - 160 km/h: 10.2 secs
50-80 km/h: 1.7 secs
80-120 km/h: 2.9 secs
FUEL CONSUMPTION (EU Cycle) *
Urban 25.4 litres/100 km
Extra Urban 11.4 litres/100 km
Combined 16.5 litres/100 km
CO2 emissions 384 g/km
FUEL CONSUMPTION (EPA Cycle) **
City Driving 12.0 mpg (US)
Highway Driving 19.0 mpg (US)
Combined 14.0 mpg (US)
* Fuel consumption figures are provisional and subject to Type Approval.
** Fuel consumption figures are provisional and subject to EPA certification.
EU 5 and US LEV 11