Bentley expects its entry-level V8 Continental GT to boost GT production back to its peak of 5000 units. Because of the recession, the output had been halved. Set to go on sale in 2012, the V8 is targeted at a new group of buyers, especially in the US, where V8s are popular.
The Continental GT was showcased at the Paris motor show earlier this month. It will cost from £135,760, an increase of almost £10,000 on the current car's £126,500 sticker price. Bentley is hoping that this new model will continue the success of the 2003 original.
At first glance, they may appear similar but the new Conti has been given several major updates, including a new engine and a yet undisclosed 4.0-litre direct injection V8.
The 2011 version of Bentley’s familiar twin-turbo 6.0-litre W12 received revisions to its engine management electronics and a few new low-friction measures that would enhance both power and torque, from 552bhp to 567bhp and from 479lb ft to 516lb ft.
Bentley hasn’t provided a lot of details about its all-new V8 except to say that the capacity is 4.0 liters. It’s likely to be turbocharged and it will arrive a year after the new Conti is launched next March. The engineers said that the V8 version will still have four-wheel drive.