Report: Bentley Continental Supersports “Ice Speed Record” Convertible coming to Geneva

Filed under: Motorsports, Convertible, Performance, Geneva Motor Show, Bentley, Luxury

Bentley Ice Speed Record Continental Supersports

Bentley “Ice Speed Record” Continental Supersports Convertible – Click above for high-res image gallery

It looks like Bentley isn’t wasting any time when it comes to capitalizing on the company’s latest feat of speed. According to Cars UK, the automaker is planning to roll out 100 special-edition models to commemorate Juha Kankkunen’s recent record-breaking ice-speed run. Officially called the Bentley Continental Supersports Ice-Speed Record Convertible, the special-edition cars will be available with one of three unique paint colors; Beluga, Quartzite and Arctic White. Red detail accents will be found all over the vehicle, and a special dark gray soft top caps off the whole shebang.

Under the hood, buyers won’t be disappointed to find a 6.0-liter W12 engine with a galactic 631 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque on tap. Those numbers are identical to the standard edition, though given that Kankkunen’s record-breaking vehicle was powered by the same lump, we can’t exactly fault Bently for not turning up the heat.

Bentley isn’t saying exactly how much the new special-edition vehicle will set you back, but we do know that the drophead is supposed to show its face at this year’s Geneva Motor Show next month. Expect to hear more then.

Gallery: Bentley Continental Supersports Convertible sets world speed record on ice

[Source: Cars UK]

Report: Bentley Continental Supersports “Ice Speed Record” Convertible coming to Geneva originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 25 Feb 2011 14:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Rumormill: Bentley to bring new Continental Supersports to Geneva?

Filed under: Coupe, Performance, Geneva Motor Show, Bentley, Rumormill

2012 Bentley Continental GT

2012 Bentley Continental GT – Click above for high-res image gallery

The first generation of Bentley’s Continental range spawned as many variants as its engine has cylinders. Over seven years of production, they including the GT coupe, the GTC convertible and the Flying Spur sedan, in three levels of engine output (standard, Speed and Supersports), with countless special editions and factory-sanctioned coachbuilt variants (like Zagato’s GTZ and Touring’s Flying Star) along the way.

So what’s next in the pipeline? Well, now that the second-generation Continental GT has hit the market, we can expect the whole rigamarole to start anew. While the range will expand southwards with a new V8 engine option, rumors have begun to surface over the northward expansion with a new Supersports model.

Tipped to be even more extreme than the stripped-out, pumped-up, flex-fuel first-gen Supersports, the new version based on the new Continental GT could benefit from a more aggressive aero package with spoilers and vents aplenty, and a potentially even more powerful engine. Word has it that production could be capped at 100 units, and that Bentley could be planning a surprise unveiling at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show. That said, we’d be a little surprised if Bentley jumped right from the Conti GT to the top whack Supersports – if they follow tradition, other bodystyles and a Speed-series of models will arrive first.

Gallery: 2011 Bentley Continental GT

[Source: TopSpeed]

Rumormill: Bentley to bring new Continental Supersports to Geneva? originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 22 Feb 2011 14:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: See Bentley’s record-setting 205 mph run on ice

Filed under: Motorsports, Convertible, Performance, Europe, Videos, Bentley, Luxury

Bentley ice speed world record

Bentley sets an ice-speed record – Click above to watch video after the jump

When we first heard that Juha Kankkunen and Bentley had managed to set a new ice-speed record off the coast of Finland, we immediately wanted to see footage of the action. The thought of watching a race-prepped Continental Supersports Convertible dash across just 20 centimeters of Baltic Sea ice is the kind of thing that haunts our daydreams. Fortunately, the automaker has been so kind as to slip the world a quick clip of the record-smashing run, complete with angles from the sky, the ice and the cockpit.

Kankkunen demolished his old ice-speed record of 199.83 mph set in 2007. At the time, the World Rally champion was shooting to cruise past the 200 mph barrier but just barely missed his mark. He had no such trouble this go-round. His drop-head clicked off a top speed of 205.48 mph.

Interestingly enough, aside from a set of winter tires, some safety kit and a couple of aero additions, the Continental Supersports Convertible that Kankkunen used as his weapon of choice was essentially a bone-stock machine. Hit the jump to check out the clip for yourself.

Gallery: Bentley Continental Supersports Convertible sets world speed record on ice

[Source: Bentley via YouTube]

Continue reading Video: See Bentley’s record-setting 205 mph run on ice

Video: See Bentley’s record-setting 205 mph run on ice originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Feb 2011 16:55:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Rendered Speculation: Bentley looking to expand with entry coupe, crossover?

Filed under: Coupe, Sedan, Performance, Crossover, Bentley, Rumormill, Luxury

Bentley crossover renderingRumors continue to swirl that incoming Bentley boss Wolfgang Dürheimer, who previously served as head of research and development at Porsche, is looking long and hard at how to expand the luxury marque’s product line. Considering Dürheimer’s experience making magic happen at Porsche, it seems likely that Bentley would tap into the platform used for the Panamera sedan, and that’s exactly what the blokes from Auto Express are suggesting.

The first new model may be an ultra-luxe machine that would fit into the burgeoning four-door-coupe segment. If so, expect a price tag in the mid-$250,000 range and engine choices ranging from the tried-and-true W12 to a new turbocharged 4.0-liter V8.

Those powertrains may also find their way into the engine bay of a Bentley crossover, says Auto Express. As much as some may protest, a Porsche Cayenne-based Bentley with a price near the $200K mark would seem a very real possibility… as would an optional diesel engine, which would be new territory for the brand.

Finally, the long-rumored entry-level (can anything with a $150,000 price tag be called entry-level?) Bentley coupe that would slot below the Continental GT is still a talking point. Branching out into any or all of these segments are seen as a way to get back to the 10,000-unit peak sales year of 2007, as compared to just 4,616 units in 2009.

Head on over to Auto Express to see some rendered speculation on what these vehicles could potentially look like.

[Source: Auto Express]

Rendered Speculation: Bentley looking to expand with entry coupe, crossover? originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 16 Feb 2011 16:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Bentley sets new land ice speed record

Filed under: Convertible, Performance, Etc., Europe, Bentley, Luxury

Bentley Continental speed record on ice

Bentley Continental Supersports Convertible shatters ice speed record – Click above for high-res image gallery

The Baltic Sea, sitting off the coast of Finland, is a white wasteland of ice and snow during the winter portion of the calendar. Local hero Juha Kankkunen, a four-time World Rally Champion, looks out over that vast expanse and sees a blank slate on which he can make his mark. What exactly is that mark? It’s 200 miles per hour… on ice.

Kankkunen is no stranger to going fast over less-than-ideal driving conditions. However, his rally cars never hit 200 mph and he wasn’t driving them on 70 centimeters worth of ice, four kilometers away from the Finnish coast. This fast Fin had previously taken a shot at the 200-mph mark, back in 2007 using a Bentley Continental GT. He came up just short, but his official speed of 199.83 mph did shatter the previous ice speed record of 184 mph, which was set in 1995 in a Bugatti EB110 Supersport.

This time around, Kankkunen was piloting the Bentley Continental Supersports Convertible, which boasts 621 horsepower under the hood. The only modifications made to the car included a roll-cage, Pirelli winter tires, a rear parachute and some light aero mods to help with stability on the rather slippery surface.

His Bentley gurgling at the start line like a British school boy who just discovered Pop Rocks, Juha Kankkunen pushed the accelerator to the velvety soft carpet of his Supersports ice rocket. One thousand meters later and the world has a new record for driving quickly over ice… 205.48 mph. Onnittelut Juha ja Bentley!

Gallery: Bentley Continental Supersports Convertible sets world speed record on ice

[Source: Bentley]

Continue reading Bentley sets new land ice speed record

Bentley sets new land ice speed record originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 15 Feb 2011 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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New Ultimate Factories episodes coming for Challenger, Viper, Bentley and more

Filed under: Etc., Plants/Manufacturing, Videos, Bentley, Chrysler, Dodge, Maserati, Mercedes-Benz

Dodge Viper assembly

Ultimate Factories shows how the Dodge Viper gets its heart – Click above to watch video after the jump

Ultimate Factories is coming back to the National Geographic channel, and the newest season is chalk-full of more automotive action. Upcoming shows have camera crews venturing into Dodge, Maserati, Mercedes-Benz and Bentley factories to show how they paint a Dodge Challenger, what it takes to build a Maserati engine and how Dodge builds (or is that built?) the Viper chassis and its 8.4-liter heart.

Ultimate Factories airs Thursday nights at 10pm and the Dodge Challenger episode is set to run on February 3rd. But before then, get a preview in the video after the jump.

[Source: National Geographic]

Continue reading New Ultimate Factories episodes coming for Challenger, Viper, Bentley and more

New Ultimate Factories episodes coming for Challenger, Viper, Bentley and more originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 24 Jan 2011 17:32:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Touring Superleggera ramps up production of Bentley Flying Star

Filed under: Coupe, Wagon, Bentley, Luxury

Touring Superleggera Flying Star – Click above for high-res image gallery

Bentley shooting brake, anyone? Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera can hook you up. The Milanese coachbuilder unveiled the Flying Star at last year’s Geneva Motor Show, and stole our hearts in the process. But since the shooting brake debuted and its order books opened, Touring has only made three examples of the custom creation.

No wonder, as the coachbuilder says it takes 4,000 man-hours to transform a Continental GTC (still the outgoing model, we gather) into the long-roofed coupe. But thanks to increased investment in the form of new equipment and staff, Touring can now reportedly be working on up to five vehicles at a time.

Each example still takes six months to deliver, with total production limited to 19 examples. Fortunate buyers can specify from a range of customizations, including the twin-turbo 6.0-liter W12 in states of tune ranging from 552 horsepower (base) to 621 (Supersports).

Gallery: Geneva 2010: Touring Superleggera Flying Star

Live Photos: Jonny Lieberman / Copyright (C)2010 Weblogs, Inc.
[Source: Autocar]

Touring Superleggera ramps up production of Bentley Flying Star originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 20 Jan 2011 18:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Review: 2011 Bentley Mulsanne

Filed under: Sedan, Bentley, Reviews, Luxury

A Century Of Automotive Passion Delivers A New Flagship Sedan

2011 Bentley Mulsanne

2011 Bentley Mulsanne – Click above for high-res image gallery

Do not press the start button. Take a deep breath. Savor the craftsmanship. Take it all in.

Begin by examining the four brightly-polished organ-stop vent plungers. The stainless steel knobs situated high on the dashboard are easy to miss at a cursory glance. However, each is tasked with the important role of shutting down airflow from one of the bulls-eye air vents. Decades ago, the smooth metal rods would have been connected directly to the mechanical flapper. Today, with the physical connection severed by technology, a series of electronic micro switches sends orders to digital servos that handle the job. Understanding the tactile significance of that age-old mechanical movement, Bentley engineers painstakingly replicated the gratifying feedback of a precisely polished steel rod sliding over smooth felt to pull a soft leather damper closed. Their accomplishment is all but flawless.

Tasked with building an all-new flagship that captures the essence of the Bentley marque – incomparable coach-built luxury and a passion for power and speed – the engineers and designers in Crewe left nothing to chance. The result is the 2011 Bentley Mulsanne.
Now… press the start button.

Gallery: 2011 Bentley Mulsanne: Review

2011 Bentley Mulsanne2011 Bentley Mulsanne2011 Bentley Mulsanne2011 Bentley Mulsanne2011 Bentley Mulsanne

Photos copyright (C)2011 Drew Phillips / AOL

Continue reading Review: 2011 Bentley Mulsanne

Review: 2011 Bentley Mulsanne originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 20 Jan 2011 11:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Bentley mulling third product line?

Filed under: Bentley

bentley logo steering wheel

New Bentley CEO Wolfgang Durheimer inherited a high-end marque with only two product lines; the recently refreshed Continental GT and the spanking new Mulsanne. The two vehicles are tasked with continuing to prop up the brand after sales dropped to only 4,616 units in 2009, and according to a The Detroit Bureau help could be on the way.

During an interview with outgoing Bentley boss Franz-Josef Paefgen, the CEO said that Durheimer is tasked with noodling the idea of a third model. If we were the betting type we’d place our chips on a high-end electric car to help the brand reach rising emissions standards or an “entry model” under $150,000 to help increase volume – and the latter seems far more likely. At any rate it appears a third Bentley is still years out even if Durheimer and his team decide to expand its product lineup.

[Source: The Detroit Bureau]

Bentley mulling third product line? originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 18 Jan 2011 16:33:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Paefgen hands Dürheimer the keys to Bentley… and Bugatti

Filed under: Detroit Auto Show, Hirings/Firings/Layoffs, Bentley, Bugatti

Wolfgang Dürheimer and Franz-Josef Paefgen

Franz-Josef Paefgen hands Wolfgang Dürheimer the keys to Bentley – Click above for high-res image gallery

The king is dead. Long live the king.

After eight years at the helm of Bentley, Dr. Franz-Josef Paefgen has officially stepped down from his position as chairman and CEO of Bentley Motors. Following the announcement a little over a month ago, the longtime Volkswagen group executive has literally handed the keys over to his successor, Wolfgang Dürheimer, on the floor of the Detroit Auto Show.

The official changing of the guard took place when Dürheimer accepted the keys to the vintage 1930 Bentley 8-Litre saloon that served as company founder W.O. Bentley’s personal transport.

Intriguingly, Dürheimer will also be taking charge of Bugatti. The two executive rolls were combined when Paefgen took the head office at Molsheim as well upon the resignation of Thomas Bscher from Bugatti’s helm. Industry insiders were waiting to see whether the brands would be placed under separate leadership once Paefgen was out of the picture, but now we have an answer.

Gallery: Bentley changes the guard at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show

[Source: Bentley]

Continue reading Paefgen hands Dürheimer the keys to Bentley… and Bugatti

Paefgen hands Dürheimer the keys to Bentley… and Bugatti originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 11 Jan 2011 18:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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