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Bentley unleashes tar-shredding 2020 Bentayga Speed

The new Bentley Bentayga Speed will be available in SA from the second quarter of 2021.
The new Bentley Bentayga Speed will be available in SA from the second quarter of 2021.
Image: Supplied

Bentley on Wednesday unveiled to the world its rapid new Bentayga Speed. Built to provide breathtaking performance, the Speed comes equipped with a hand-built 6.0-litre W12 twin-turbocharged engine that delivers 467kW and a monstrous 900Nm worth of torque between 1,500rpm and 5,000rpm.

Bentley claims that these figures will thrust the Bentayga Speed to 100km/h in 3.9-seconds and on to a maximum speed of 306km/h. Not bad considering that this British beast tips the scales at a staggering 2.5 tons. 

This special and arguably complex motor also features cylinder deactivation, which helps to reduce fuel consumption out on the open road. Bentley says that the engine control unit will automatically deactivate one complete bank of six cylinders as required. This not only benefits CO2 emissions but realises significant economy gains under part-throttle cruising conditions. Will the average Speed owner care though? We highly doubt it. 

To help the Bentayga Speed cope with this added horsepower the Bentley engineers fitted it with no less than four on-road Drive Dynamics modes: Comfort at one extreme, Sport at the other and with Bentley mode – the balanced recommendation of Bentley’s chassis team – alongside a Custom mode for customers who opt to create their own set-up.

The Bentayga Speed will rocket to a claimed maximum speed of 306km/h.
The Bentayga Speed will rocket to a claimed maximum speed of 306km/h.
Image: Supplied

Sport mode has been recalibrated to enhance response from the W12 engine and the eight-speed automatic transmission, together with the air suspension system and Bentley Dynamic Ride. The effect is a more dynamic and engaging drive.

Another notable feature is the presence of Bentley Dynamic Ride: the world’s first electric active roll control technology that uses a 48-volt system. It counteracts lateral rolling forces when cornering and ensures maximum tyre contact to deliver class-leading cabin stability, ride comfort and handling. Recalibration of Bentley’s Torque Vectoring by Brake system – whereby the car lightly brakes the inside rear wheel at corner entry to sharpen the front axle turn-in – has made the Bentayga Speed even more responsive to drive.

Carbon ceramic brakes are available as an option and provide a maximum braking torque of 6,000Nm. Able to withstand temperatures of up to 1,000°C, these high-performance anchors also offer a weight saving of more than 20kg over conventional iron brakes.

Carbon ceramic brakes are available as an option and are probably worth taking considering that the Speed weighs in at 2.5 tons.
Carbon ceramic brakes are available as an option and are probably worth taking considering that the Speed weighs in at 2.5 tons.
Image: Supplied

To help it stand out from its “lesser” siblings, the Bentayga Speed hits the asphalt running with a number of notable exterior styling tweaks. These include dark-tint headlights, body-coloured side skirts, unique front and rear bumpers and an elongated tailgate spoiler. You'll also spot dark-tint radiator and bumper grilles as well as unique 22-inch alloy wheels available in two finishes - painted and dark tint. The rear of the Speed has been spruced up with oval shaped exhaust finishers and dark-tint tail lamps. 

Seventeen standard paint colours are supplemented by a further 47 hues in the Extended and Mulliner ranges, with an additional 24 duotone options. Customers wanting to go beyond this total of 88 options can have paintwork colour matched to any sample they provide. This exceptional range is complemented by a palette of 15 hide colours, six colour splits and eight veneers, and two technical finishes. Customisation really is your friend here.  

In keeping with its sporty performance credentials, the cabin of the Bentayga Speed has been trimmed in Alcantara as standard. Indeed, here you will find it applied to the seat cushions and back rest centre panels, gear lever, steering wheel, lower knee trim areas, upper pillar trim and headliner. Though if this isn't to your taste, you can instead opt for the Leather Specification that covers these aforementioned areas in hide.

The interior mirrors that of the lesser V8 model. The new 10.9-inch touchscreen infotainment system offers impressive connectivity.
The interior mirrors that of the lesser V8 model. The new 10.9-inch touchscreen infotainment system offers impressive connectivity.
Image: Supplied

As in the Bentayga V8 the Speed features an updated dashboard, instrument cluster and steering wheel design. There's also and impressive new infotainment system anchored by a huge 10.9-inch touchscreen. As well as the usual array of media sources, this system offers wireless Apple CarPlay as standard (in addition to the previous standard wired system), along with Android Auto. There's also a fully digital driver’s information panel similar to the Continental GT and new Flying Spur. The display can be customised to the driver’s requirements and features real-time lighting effects with elegant animations.

The new Bentley Bentayga Speed will be available in SA from the second quarter of 2021. Pricing will be announced closer to the time. 


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