When it comes to grand tourers, the qualities that greatest classify the phase are nebulous. However we will often choose the truth that a superb GT must strike a stability of consolation and efficiency over a considerable journey. Some bend the needle in both path however the all-new Bentley Continental GT is already able to be the perfect selection for these looking for a lavish street tripper. It’s tempting to think about that the GT Convertible is identical sans roof, nevertheless it wouldn’t do the automotive justice. Popping the highest modifications the expertise dramatically, and all of a sudden, we’re debating whether or not the perfect GT is the one which doesn’t get in between you and street journey wonderment.
The Good: The elegant profile with the highest down, the yards of leather-based and all of the stitching that holds it collectively. Naim’s selection sound system with seat bass thumpers is a deal with, as is the W12 beneath the bonnet.
Who It’s For: Luxurious consumers in sun-abundant areas in search of a every day driver. Just like the coupe, the convertible is certain to attract in present Bentley house owners in search of an improve. Additionally skilled, soccer gamers (sorry, “footballers”).
Watch Out For: Efficiency chops are there, however they’ve limits. Those that get carried away will meet stiff resistance. The neck hotter is loud and doesn’t do a lot until you’re pressed flush towards the seat.
Options: The world of luxurious efficiency 2+2 convertibles is an unique set, however there are some options to Bentley’s providing. They embrace:
• Rolls-Royce Daybreak ($346,300, base)
• Aston Martin DB11 V8 Volante ($198,995, base)
• Ferrari Portofino ($215,00, base)
Evaluate: Chock filled with luxurious and packing efficiency warmth, the Bentley Continental GTC takes all the things good concerning the coupe and makes the sky the precise restrict when it comes to roof choices. For a automotive that leans fairly closely on its heritage when it comes to design, the present evolution incorporates the cabrio conversion in a balanced approach. With the highest down, there’s by no means a way that the swept-back rear pillars and windshield have been nixed. With the highest up, the change is much less seamless because the fastback type of the coupe provides method to a extra conventional three-box format.
Like its coupe iteration, the GTC retains its tell-tale haunches, giving them a crisp pinch within the bodywork to spotlight them, main the attention down the door and to the massive fascia. The entrance overhang is decreased on the brand new Continental, because of shifting the entrance wheels ahead 135mm. On the back and front, the lights have been redesigned to be extra modern, permitting the oval taillamps to exist outdoors of boxy frames and the entrance 4 LED matrix headlamps to undertake a cleaner, bolder look. The entire package deal rides on both 21-inch tri-spoke wheels or non-compulsory 22-inch rims.
Naturally, there’s a wealth of shade mixtures to combine and match. Seven exterior roof colours may be mixed with 17 physique colours – initially, in any case. There are masses extra, relying on how far down the bespoke Bentley rabbit gap you want to dive down.
One also can swap the basic chrome parts with a blackline package deal so as to add a darker edge to the grill and aspect skirts, add or take away badges, parts of brightwork and add a model-year-limited centennial package deal. This marks any Bentley made this yr with particular gold-enhanced badging marking its lineage to the corporate’s founding in 1919.
Fittingly, probably the most particular factor of the GTC – the convertible roof – is pretty innocuous. Deploying or packing down in 19 seconds, the Z-fold roof can’t keep away from the inherent drawback of the stark distinction that comes with non-hard-top convertibles. It doesn’t look nice when up, however you’ll be able to lean into the state of affairs and get the highest in optionally available tweed. Seems are about the place the negatives finish for the Z-fold roof as a result of so far as perform goes, it’s sensible. Posted up, the inside not often betrays the feeling that you simply’re not within the coupe. Whereas there’s some wind noise at velocity, it by no means reaches anyplace close to a distracting quantity, and you could even overlook for some time that the highest does certainly come down.
As soon as it does, the inside blossoms for the world to see. Hand-stitched leather-based seats from Scandinavian cowhide sit in a cabin be a part of 10 sq. meters of wooden veneer to make up a particularly luxurious setting for a street journey. Swiss-watch impressed Côte de Genève machining may be reduce into aluminum for the middle console, whereas a choice of woods, stitching and patterns make up the remaining.
It’s not simply good to take a look at, both. 20-way seats make discovering the optimum driving place a breeze. A digital show cluster brings all the data wanted to the forefront, aided by a head-up show projected onto the windscreen. This accompanies the 12.Three-inch digital MMI show, which sits within the middle of the sprint. That is your gateway to a myriad of automotive menus, navigation, and music choices. Intuitive and mirroring regular pill gestures, it’s straightforward to faucet, pinch and zoom the display for no matter you’re on the lookout for.
And once you’re not in search of something, you’ll be able to put the display away by way of a slick rotating panel. The rotating show flips between three panels: the MMI display, a panel with analog gauges, and a clean piece of veneer when the automotive is switched off. Once I drove the coupe, I referred to as it “luxurious theater” in that this might in all probability not be a worthwhile choice outdoors of the novelty, however speaking to Bentley inside design chief Darren Day has satisfied me in any other case. “When this automotive sits at Pebble Seashore in 20 years subsequent to its contemporaries, it’ll nonetheless look good.” He’s proper.
What Darren is getting at is that this feature to stow away the destined-for-obsolescence show future-proofs the Continental – or no less than its inside – from ever wanting dated. The tech in automobiles at this time will ultimately turn into ugly, non-functioning relics bolted to automotive dashboards, however the Continental can at the least disguise it behind some timeless type.
Wanting into the Continental GTC is nice and all, however searching is the place probably the most enjoyable is had. It takes a grand tour to actually put a grand tourer to the check, so our testing route took us to the south of Spain. Beginning in Marbella, we’d drive alongside the coast, turning north for a strong day’s journey to Seville, taking the scenic route alongside the best way.
Saddled with a 6.Zero-liter turbocharged W12 engine, the Bentley is keen to haul its luxurious haunches away in a rush. Cranking out 626 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque, the Continental can get all 6,316 lbs of itself from Zero to 60 in Three.7 seconds. With sufficient street, the drop-top can attain 207 mph, which is certain to mess up your hair a bit.
A cold morning had us begin the day with the highest up, the place it stored the wind out whereas we jammed to the elective 18 speaker Naim sound system, with added bass thumpers within the seats so we might really feel the rhythm on the transfer. Driver settings are accessed by way of a middle console dial, that may change the automobiles traits from consolation, to full sport, or to a custom-made setting that maps issues like throttle response, suspension and steering to a single choice.
The GTC goes from wafting luxurious carriage to brutish speedster briefly order. Dropping the highest and flicking the settings into sport on the sight of twisty mountain roads, the Bentley descended into them like a fighter aircraft that encountered an enemy squadron. For such a big engine, the W12 could be very conservative with its bark, and it takes some coaxing to get it to shout. Nonetheless, it’s a perfectly distinctive expertise and having the roof stowed away delivers it to your ears in a means that might solely be enhanced by pointing its pipes immediately at your ears. Attending to the primary nook is fast, however the substantial weight of the automotive is managed by a 48-volt anti-roll system, which makes use of actuators on the anti-roll bar of every axle to mitigate any rocking. For what its value, it does an admirable job, making the GTC able to tackling bends it will in any other case wrestle with. A 3-chamber air suspension, double wishbone entrance and multi-link rear suspension are available to do a lot of the grunt work.
Energy is fed via an eight-speed dual-clutch automated gearbox that does an admirable job nearly all of the time however might be bullish in sure efficiency purposes. Climbing up a mountain move, I discovered that it was keen to maintain me in a better gear than I needed, ravenous me of desired revs. I figured switching to guide would give me the management I wanted, however even on this setting, the GTC disallowed a number of completely affordable downshifts. I shortly grew uninterested in arguing and begrudgingly relinquished management. The Bentley has a transparent, inflexible demeanor it wants to take care of, and it gained’t stand for making an attempt to push past it.
In the long run, although, these gripes didn’t add as much as a lot. Stares and head-nods signaled the approval of these admiring our luxurious rocket, whereas we lapped up every part the senses offered. The solar lit up the hills round us whereas the smells of the olive timber blew via the cabin, a W12 cranking away in our ears like a steam engine.
Verdict: The Bentley Continental GTC delivers all the things the coupe does and provides the drop-top choice with little compromise. The cabin retains quiet with the roof up, and the splendor of the good outdoor is at your disposal with the flick of a button. Its ragtop isn’t nearly as good wanting because the coupe, however likelihood is it gained’t be up more often than not, anyway.
2019 Bentley Continental GTC Specs:
Powertrain: 6.Zero-liter twin-turbo W12 TSI; eight-speed dual-clutch automated
Torque: 664 lb-ft
Weight: 5,322 lbs kerb weight, 6,316 lbs gross weight
Zero-60: Three.7 secs
Prime Velocity: 207 mph
Bentley hosted us and offered this product for evaluation.
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