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The Bentley Continental GT Speed, the fastest car ever built by Bentley

Published in Navis June / July 2013
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Bentley Motors Limited has been crafting some of the world's finest automobiles since its foundation in 1919. The brand is synonymous with luxury and fine engineering. With the Continental GT Speed, Bentley has reached new heights of performance and detailed craftsmanship.

A Mechanical Marvel

The Continental GT Speed is the fastest car ever built by Bentley. It has a top speed of 205 mph (330 km/h) thanks to a six-liter twin-turbo W12 engine that churns out 616 horsepower at 6,000 rpm. The engine delivers 590 pound-feet of torque to the all-wheel-drive system, allowing it to take off without hesitation. All of that power lets it jump from zero to 60 mph (100 km/h) in just four seconds. When pushed a little farther, it can reach 100 mph (160 km/h) in nine seconds.

Expert engineers designed the Continental GT Speed to out-perform all other Bentley cars. The fast speeds, however, come from more than the engine. State-of-the-art software performs over 180 million calculations per second to make sure that the Continental GT Speed uses fuel and oxygen as efficiently as possible.

The ZF eight-speed automatic transmission also contributes to the car's awesome performance. This transmission coordinates the engine torque and speed, delivering 60 percent of the power to the rear and 40 percent to the front. Its block shifting technology gives the driver complete control over the car's otherworldly response time and acceleration.

Bentley Makes the New Continental GT Speed More Efficient

Bently Continental SpeedAnyone interested in buying a Bentley expects a high level of performance and beauty. Now, they can expect improved efficiency from cars like the Continental GT Speed. Bentley engineers tweaked the engine, exhaust, and transmission systems to make the car 12 percent more efficient than the previous model.

It has better fuel economy and emits less CO2. Owners can expect a combined fuel efficiency of 19.5 mpg (14.5 liters/100 km). Few 12-cylinder cars can even come close to that level of efficiency. The new design also emits 338 g/km of CO2. That makes it better for the environment while also giving drivers the opportunity to stay on the road instead of wasting time at gas stations.

A Luxurious Design for Those Who Appreciate the World's Best Cars
Bentley has put the latest technology inside the Continental GT Speed, but it has retained aspects of its classic look by giving the car a sculpted haunch and a powerline that runs through its entire body.

Engineers tested the body design to ensure excellent aerodynamics. While it has the lines and curves reminiscent of an R-Type Continental from the 1950s, it also has a lightweight front end made of aerospace-grade aluminum alloy. This lets the car cut through the wind, giving it a powerful appearance while improving efficiency.

While anyone will experience a thrill traveling in this high-speed luxury car, it's meant for those who appreciate the engineering and craftsmanship involved in creating such a beautiful, efficient machine. The car looks so wonderful that it belongs in a museum. Unfortunately, trapping it inside an exhibit would mean depriving it of the open road, where it can truly flourish.

Inside the Continental GT SpeedBently Continental Speed

Anyone lucky enough to drive the new Continental GT Speed will get to experience the kind of luxury that only comes with a Bentley. The seats and steering wheel are covered in the softest leather. A high-polished veneer and cool-touch metals work with the leather to create a beautiful interior. Buyers get to choose between piano black and dark stained burr walnut veneers. They can also have Bentley emblems embroidered into the headrests.

The cabin gives passengers access to the latest in information and entertainment technologies. Bentley includes an eight-inch touchscreen in the Continental GT Speed. This gives the driver full control over a 30GB system that includes satellite navigation, music, and movies. The touchscreen also lets the driver accept phone calls, monitor the car's performance, and adjust comfort settings.

An 11-speaker Naim audio system makes music and movies remarkable whether the driver plays it from the car's iPod connection, SD card reader, six-CD changer, or 15GB hard drive. No matter where this car goes, it knows how to pamper its passengers.

Bentley has always made excellent automobiles. The Continental GT Speed draws inspiration from the legendary Speed models built during the early 1920s. By resurrecting this classic look and melding it with the world's most advanced automotive technology, Bentley has outdone itself once again. This is the kind of vehicle that shows what highly trained designers and engineers can build when given free rein to use their best ideas without compromise.

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Pablo Ferrero

Pablo Ferrero is the leader at the Navis Writing Team, other writers are Naty Frúmboli, Matt Thompson and Mechi di Paola. Our team has extensive experience in writing yacht reviews, articles for travel and sailing magazines and in the general yachting world. In Navis Luxury Yachts Magazine, we combine our knowledge and our love for sailing.