Bentley launches 202 mph convertible
Luxury carmaker Bentley wants you comfortable in a Force 5 hurricane — the four-seat convertible that it launched Monday can hit 202 miles per hour (325 kph) with the top down.
The Continental GT Speed Convertible’s 12-cylinder engine throws out a huge amount of power — 616 horsepower that rockets the soft top from zero to 100 miles per hour (160 kph) in just 9.7 seconds.
But there are none of the spoilers usually seen on such fast cars. It looks elegant enough to drive the Queen around in, even in the cool months, when passengers can benefit from electronic neck warmers.
Bentley chief executive Wolfgang Schreiber promised “the sensory thrills of the world’s fastest four-seat soft-top and the practicality of a year-round grand tourer, together with unrivalled levels of luxury and refinement.”
“It is designed for those who accept no compromise,” he added, as he unveiled the new model at the Detroit auto show.
While it might not matter to someone who can afford one — each of those miles per hour will cost a buyer more than $1,000 — Schreiber pointed out that the company’s newest GT model has gained 15 percent in fuel efficiency.
It adds a new star to the Bentley ultra-luxury stable, which despite prices like $300,000 for its Mulsanne limousine, and despite the slow world economy, managed to sell 8,510 vehicles last year, 22 percent more than 2011.
The United States was the firm’s biggest market with 2,315 cars last year, slightly ahead of fast-growing China.