Bentley scraps sub-Bentayga SUV, instead confirms plan to build electric sports car

Article by Christian A., on September 17, 2017

We recently heard that Italian automakers, Ferrari and Lamborghini, are not so keen on building an all-electric sports car just yet. On the contrary, Bentley has just confirmed that there will be an electric sports car coming from their end.

The Bentley Bentayga is currently one of the most powerful SUVs out there - being the fastest and most luxurious SUVs on the market today. The British automaker hoped for it to be a best-selling model, but with a hefty $229,000 price tag, it isn’t that easy to sell. In 2017, Bentley has sold under 700 units in the United States. With this track record, Bentley has decided to back on its plan to develop more SUVs.

In an interview of Bentley by Autocar, the automaker said that they will be developing a sports car instead of a sub-Bentayga SUV. What makes it even more interesting is the fact that it will be completely electric, just like the EXP12 Speed 6e concept that was presented at Geneva earlier this year. Once finished, it will be the luxury automaker’s fifth model in the lineup.

Wolfgang Durheimer, CEO of Bentley, said at the Frankfurt Motor Show that a small SUV is no longer part of their immediate plan, and that they are prioritizing a car that will carry a full electric powertrain.

Another thing that we learned from Durheimer is that the new sports car will have the same J1 electric platform as the Porsche Mission E. It will also be a little bigger than the EXP12 concept, though it may get a lot of its design elements from it. Bentley did not give us a ton of information regarding the electric powertrain, but based on the EXP12’s instrument panel, it seems like the sports car will be capable of around 300 miles (482 kilometers), while working with its four-wheel drive powertrain.

Durheimer also said that the British marque’s vision is to become the leader of electrification in the luxury segment. He sees that this would be perfect for the brand and their scheme of low rev torque that can seamlessly accelerate.

Within the next few years, Bentley not only will focus on the electrified sports car, but they also plan to introduce three new plug-in hybrid vehicles. Sadly, they did not provide a more detailed timeline. It will be the Bentayga SUV that will get the very first plug-in hybrid treatment. This will then be followed by the Continental and Flying Spur.

We are anticipating that within two years, the first all-electric Bentley will go into production.

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