Bentley to Reveal Sports-Car Concept at 2012 Paris Auto Show
Bentley, the British maker of ultra-luxury cars, will launch a one-off concept car at the Paris auto show in late September, sources have told us. Details are not available at this point, but the vehicle is designed to underscore the brand’s sporting aspirations. The concept is expected to be the sportiest vehicle the brand has shown since the 1999 Bentley Hunaudières concept car, which was built on a Lamborghini platform and powered by a W-16 engine. No subsequent series production car followed.
We expect the brand’s styling direction to move in a new direction, as the current Continental GT is deemed too similar to its predecessor, and the EXP 9 F SUV received mixed reviews—to put it mildly. As Bentley moves forward with a mid-term sales target of 15,000 units annually, the brand will visually play up its sports-car heritage. As it stands, Bentley’s lineup includes some of the most-fun-to-drive offerings in their respective segments.
- Comparison Test: 2010 Bentley Continental Flying Spur Speed vs. 2011 Rolls-Royce Ghost
- Road Test: 2012 Bentley Mulsanne
- First Drive: 2013 Bentley Continental GT V8
After the reveal of the Paris concept, the next to get an aggressive restyling will be the ultra-fast Continental Supersport, the four-door Continental Flying Spur, followed in 2014 by an open-top version of the Mulsanne, and an SUV by 2015. As we learned in our interview with Wolfgang Dürheimer, the SUV will be powered by a choice of V-8 and W-12 gasoline engines, and a V-8 diesel; and plug-in hybrids will become part of Bentley’s lineup as well.