This Bentley matches a Formula One car’s top speed

The Bentley Continental GT Speed takes 110 hours to handcraft and gets to 100kmh in just 3.9 seconds.

Damien Reid December 21, 2016

You have to love Bentley for standing in the face of modern convention and building what they, and equally as importantly, what their customers want without pandering to political correctness. Of course their cars are more efficient with each new model across almost every area and this new Continental GT Speed is no different, but it’s still a lesson in performance and luxury that few others can match.

Powered by the venerable six-litre, twin- turbo, W12-cylinder engine it now delivers a top speed of 331kmh and gets to 100kmh in just 3.9 seconds. I tested its top speed at an airfield on the previous model and backed off as it was still accelerating through a heady 305kmh on a damp runway so I have no doubt about its new credentials.

The Speed version of the Continental GT range allows Bentley to let its proverbial hair down and introduce a wild range of new colours including the brightest of reds, yellows, lime greens and blues as well as carbon fibre trim instead of the old world timbers usually placed inside in addition to carbon fibre exterior wing mirrors, side and rear skirts.

The GT Speed remains the fastest Bentley that almost matches a Formula One car’s top speed but in complete, fuss-free comfort while delivering 633bhp and a record 840Nm of torque. It takes 110 hours to handcraft each Continental GT and the upgraded W12 engine is hand assembled over 12 and a half hours by 30 engineers. 

Of course it’s heavy at 2,320kg which gives it stability at speed but it still has to cut through the air cleanly and being a Bentley, you don’t just stick wings and flairs over its beautiful coachwork.

The design team had its work cut out to make sure the body mods added to the GT Speed like its sharp front splitter, discreet side skirts and elegant colour coded rear diffuser are tasteful additions but also do the job of keeping it planted on the road at pace. 

Other external differentiators which signal that this is the flagship of the Continental range include darker tinted head and tail lamps, red brake callipers peering through those giant 21-inch wheels and subtle chrome Speed badges on the front guards.

Specs

  • Engine: 6-litre W12 twin-turbo
  • Power: 633bhp @ 6000rpm
  • Torque: 840Nm @ 2000rpm
  • Transmission: eight-speed auto
  • 0-100kmh: 4.2 seconds
  • Top speed: 331kmh
  • Price: from AED 840,000 

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