Subtle but noticeable stylistic differences emphasise the car’s assertive nature and high-performance credentials, such as the lower bumper grilles, rifled exhaust tailpipes and 21” speed alloy wheels in dark tint finish with iron brakes and red painted brake callipers. The Mulliner Driving Specification interior is standard on the GT Speed. Its understated, contemporary detailing uses high-quality perforated leather, with smaller diamond upholstery, aluminium and carbon fibre to provide the ideal environment in which to enjoy every journey. Bentley’s new flagship coupé is the manufacturer’s fastest-ever production car, surpassing even its stablemates in the Continental GT range. At the same time, its all-wheel drive and eight-speed transmission ensures that the GT Speed retains the effortless balance and ride quality shared by all of the manufacturer’s vehicles.
The extensive revamping of the W12 means the Speed GT offers drivers much more than just pace. Simply adding power without regard to torque delivery would have a negative effect on the inimitable Bentley ride quality. Painstaking efforts were therefore made to maintain the high compression ratio and wide range of torque common to all vehicles in the Continental range. Together with the finely balanced 40:60 front-rear weight distribution, self-levelling suspension and traction control systems, this ensures outstanding cornering ability and precise steering feedback. As well as resulting in a ferociously powerful (yet refined) engine, the tweaks made to the W12 engine have made it significantly more efficient in terms of fuel efficiency and environmental impact. The precise gear ratios of the eight-speed transmission and the efficiency of the ME17 engine management system mean that it consumes significantly less fuel and emits less CO2 than its predecessor.