As an appropriate swan song to the 2nd generation Continental GT, Bentley today unveiled the Continental GT Supersports. Like an NFL lineman that can sprint the 40 yard in 4.0 seconds, your eyes almost can’t believe what you’re witnessing when the Supersports leaves the starting line. Bentley calls it the “most extreme Bentley ever” and “the fastest four seat car in the world”. They’re right.
Powered by a revised version of the “standard” 6.0l twin-turbo W12, the Supersports has an impressive 700 horsepower and 750 lb ft of torque. All those ponies can move it from 0 to 60 mph in 3.4 seconds on its way to a top speed of 209 mph.
The increase in power comes from larger turbochargers and revised intercoolers. Bentley’s engineers went through the W12’s bottom end to beef it up, upgrading the main and rod bearings. The only available transmission is the same ZF 8 speed automatic that other GTs receive but the torque converter has been redesigned to lock up faster, allowing the Supersports to shift quicker to take advantage of the W12’s torque curve. Like the GT3-R, this new model gets a titanium exhaust that will crackle and sound off every time the engine decelerates.
The Supersports shares some traits with the 2015 limited edition Continental GT3-R. This includes the 2nd generation of Bentley’s brake-based torque vectoring system, which debuted on the GT3-R. Combined with the stability control system, it applies the brakes to individual wheels during cornering to increase performance while maintaining power to the rest of the wheels.
Unlike the GT3-R, which used lower gearing to achieve a quick 0-60 time at the cost of top end speed, the Supersports keeps the standard gear ratio and uses brute force to accomplish both incredible acceleration and a 209 mph top speed. It maintains the 60-40 rear-to-front torque split from the rest of the Continental lineup. Despite being setup to deliver a sharper driving experience, Bentley says the lowered and stiffer suspension of the Supersports will still deliver the luxurious ride quality Bentley owners will want for grand touring cruises.
Visually, you know you’re walking up to the Supersports because of its revised bumpers, front air inlets, rear diffuser and front splitter. Like the first generation Supersports, all the exterior trim is painted gloss black. The hood (bonnet) has special vents to allow air to flow into and around that beastly W12. They are visually similar to the first generation Supersports, but are made of carbon fiber. It’s an interesting choice but probably not better looking than the GT3-R’s vents. The Supersports also sports the polarizing carbon fiber rear spoiler from the GT3-R.
The interior of the new Bentley is as interesting as what is going on under the hood. A special three color interior was put together specific to this model. It’s all stitched together with unique diamond patterns in Alcantara. Buyers will be able to order from the same veneers as the standard lineup with the addition of a chequered carbon fiber option (pictured.) Unlike the first generation Supersports which came standard with only two lightweight racing buckets, this one ships with four seats as standard.
The Mulliner division is hard at work with model including an option Bentley calls the “X Specification.” It consists of eight unique duo-tone paint treatments and carbon-fibre door mirrors and heel plates. The rest of the interior is finished up with a unique steering wheel and gear lever, both trimmed with Alcantara, and special badging.
Bentley worked hard to cut weight from the car, using lightweight material in the wheels, exhaust and interior. The result is car that Bentley says is the lightest Continental from this generation and lighter even than the 2009 four seat Supersports.
A Supersports GTC will be released at the same time. It weighs 385 lbs more than the coupé but can still get from 0 to 60 in 3.7 seconds. The convertible’s top speed is 205 mph. The cars are available for order soon with the coupé starting at $296,025 before taxes. The convertible starts at $325,325.
So the question is, is it extreme or insane? We think it’s in-between. Fast enough to be extreme, yet it utilizes the right technology (torque management, all-wheel drive, torque vectoring stability control, etc,) to keep you out of trouble.
Source: Bentley Motors