Automakers are working aggressively to improve the average fuel economy of their fleets as CAFE standards are expected to soon take effect. One of the models that Bentley is relying on to boost its average is the 2013 Bentley Continental GT V8, which has an EPA rating of 15 mpg city and 24 mpg highway. It’s superior to the W-12-powerd Conti, which has ratings of 12/19 mpg city/highway.
This makes it comparable to the four-wheel drive Cadillac Escalade SUV with ratings of 13/18 mpg city/highway. The fuel efficiency of the Conti V-8 is more notable considering that it weighs 5059 pounds, nearly 300 pounds heavier than the 500-hp Porsche Cayenne Turbo, which has a rating of 15/22 mpg city/highway.
When compared to its peers, the V-8-powered Continental GT offers a higher fuel economy than the Aston Martin Vantage V-8 (14/21) and it is better than the Jaguar XKR-S on the highway by two miles (with a rating of 15/22). It’s comparable with 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL550 (16/24), which weighs 1109 pounds less. Audi had co-developed the more efficient 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8. This is actually similar to the engine expected to be used on the 2013 Audi S8 sedan.
The features that improve its fuel economy are direct injection, cylinder deactivation, and a new eight-speed automatic that distributes power to its four wheels. In addition, it’s very quick and is capable of accelerating from zero to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds, only two tenths of a second behind the W-12. The question now is whether its fuel economy would be convincing enough to turn away consumers from the Conti W-12. The V-8 is about 55 pounds lighter and is likely to be priced 10% less. Of course, owning a W-12 would already give you enough bragging rights to make it worth it.