2012 Bentley Continental GTC introduced at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show

Article by Christian Andrei, on September 14, 2011

Bentley introduced today the 2012 Continental GTC at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show and the manufacturer has already started to take orders for the second generation of its popular convertible, which is powered by a revised 6.0-litre, twin-turbocharged W12 engine coupled with a new QuickShift transmission. The British luxury car brand has also revealed that the delivery for the 2012 Bentley Continental GTC will start in late 2011.

Bentley has raised the power of this model from 560PS to 575PS (567bhp/423kW). Meanwhile, its peak torque was boosted further by 50Nm to 700Nm (516lb ft).

The automaker said that the ZF 6HP28 transmission with ‘Quickshift’ system reduces shift times by as much as 50% and it also results to the doubling of downshifts. The four-seater luxury convertible comes with FlexFuel capability; it can make use of E85 biofuel, petrol, or any combination of the two.

It could accelerate from zero to 60mph (0-100 km/h) in 4.8 seconds. Sprinting from 0 to 100 mph (0 – 160km/h) is achieved in 10.9 seconds. It could hit a maximum speed of 195 mph (314 km/h).

Bentley claims that its combined fuel consumption is rated at 17.1 mpg (16.5 l/100km) in EU Cycle while in the EPA Cycle, it offers 14 mpg. It has CO2 emissions of 384g/km. Buyers will have a wide variety of colors to choose from. There are 17 hide colors, 6 color split combinations, and seven veneers.

Exterior Design

Led by Dirk van Braeckel, Director of Design, the main challenge that the team needed to hurdle was how to use an automotive icon and then improve on it. The team eventually took inspiration from the second-generation Continental GT Coupe. This is the same model that was revealed around a year ago to great reviews. With this, the team was able to put in the Continental GTC a number of the signature styles seen in the GT.

The end result is a four-seat convertible with an exterior that is dynamic, progressive, and sculpted. Its exterior is clearly a re-interpretation of the brand’s tradition going as far back as the first R-Type Continental during the 1950s. Though the first ever Bentley Continental GTC was modest yet elegant, the new design underwent changes to make it more contemporary and up-to-date. The new design gives this model a more confident, athletic, and muscular presence on the road. Its design range is more focused and sharper and with a crisper and cleaner look, it is clearly an evolution when compared to the design of the original.

The standard matrix radiator grille Bentley is known for is still there though this time there is a new headlight design that frames it. While it still has that standard four-lamp configuration, it now includes a delicate jewel-like detail like the attractive daytime-running lamps which utilize LED. The familiar rich lines are still there but the overall look has been enhanced. In addition to being longer, it is wider, and even its waistline is higher.

For its waistline, it slowly narrows upward all the way to the back resulting in a window graphic that is more shallow and a dynamic stance. Going to its sides, its purposeful form is reminiscent of the Bentley Mulsanne. The same is true when one looks at the rear with its inset wrap-around rear lamps integrated to it, comprising the double horseshoe theme.

Just under it are the elliptical flared exhaust tailpipes that highlight its high performance quality. Since the composite bootlid is now clear to GPS and media signals, it ensures that its antennae can be hidden within it. As such, the exterior surface remains unbroken and clear, a quality rarely seen in a convertible. Meanwhile the front wings are muscular and were made using aluminum Superforming, a rather advanced manufacturing method.

Under this process, the aluminum is heated to as high as 500 degrees Celsius after which it is shaped skilfully using air pressure. This gives the body panel that distinct sculpted form. In addition, since only one aluminum sheet was used, there are no welds needed or even seams present. As such, the number of shut lines was lowered and the design of the coach is enhanced.

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