Bentley’s design team at Crewe is now under the confident direction of Luc Donckerwolke, and the Speed Six concept shows that he’s keen to keep stretching the brand’s visual language. It certainly offers a fascinating counterpoint to the soon-to-be revealed Bentayga SUV, a high, mighty and luxurious all-terrain vehicle.
The short front overhang, long bonnet, low grille and wide rear tick all the visual ‘high performance’ boxes; the twin front headlamps and 3D matrix grille material mean that it couldn’t be anything but a Bentley. The shape itself is fresh and modern, inspired by aircraft design and technology, yet also lean, muscular and distinctively British.
Inside, the cockpit gives full rein to the design and craft skills of Crewe; it’s a stunning showpiece of beautifully-wrought materials. Bentley’s traditional design cue of knurling is reinterpreted with a combination of steel and copper to create a two-metal 3D texture. The quilting of the soft Poltrona Frau leather sports seats is also reflected in the milled solid straight-grain cherry wood of the door panels. Along with an intuitive 12" touchscreen housed within a slim centre console, the result is a fusion of modern technology and traditional craft.
The rear interior space is divided into two compartments, housing a specially-designed four-piece luggage set.