Bentley has a new special edition of the Continental GT. Is this how a sporting luxury car should look? Ned Jasper gives his opinion.
This is the Bentley Continental GT Speed Black Edition. It’s the fastest production Bentley ever, with 633bhp on tap and a top speed of 206MPH. It also has enough torque to move a mountain – 620lb-ft – and a 0-62 time that will worry the likes of the Aston Martin Vanquish – 3.9 seconds. But, more importantly, it features a colour scheme, which has turned this article into more of an opinionated piece than anything else. Warning, rant to follow…
If you’re going to spend the best part of £200,000 on a new set of wheels, the chances are you’re going to want something rather special. You’re going to want this. To some, it’s nothing more than another Continental, this time with yellow mirror caps, but in my eyes (you might agree), it is the pure expression of everything that is great about the automotive world. It is bold, it is brash, but it is oh so perfect. Bare with me.
The world of über GT cars is a thriving market sector, with entrants coming from all over the globe. Whilst they may come in some of the most exotic and shapes and sizes, they are, for the most part, safe and err… boring, colour wise. How often do you see a Mercedes S-Class coupe in bright lime yellow, or orange, or even red? Maybe I’m wrong, perhaps the use of extravagant colours detracts from the overall class and desirability of a car. But, the fact remains; if you’re going to spend such an extravagant amount of money, shouldn’t the car you buy be extravagant too?
Whilst the addition of these bold colours could be seen upon as overbearingly ostentatious, it does, however, emphasise the quintessential elegance and style of what a Bentley should be, and what the GT Black Edition is. The way in which Bentley have almost re-envisioned how quality is defined, the juxtaposition of two profoundly different aspects of what is probably best described as art, is simply breathtaking. Have I lost you? Think of it this way. You’ve got the traditional classy stereotype, dark leather, silver and piano black wood inlays, polished aluminium, all of which create a vision of grandeur. Yet, it’s been combined with the fairy, ‘in yer face’ Cyber Yellow and Red additions. The kind of colours you would expect to see in a sweet jar or spray painted on a wall as part of an abstract graffiti painting. What’s more, these flamboyant colours are found on leather inserts inside; leather being something so archetypal of class.
When VW AG took over Bentley, the Continental was their way of combining the typical majesty and plush quality – as found in Bentleys of old – with the modern technological way that the automotive world was heading. The Continental was a success, and a decade later we’re raving about it more than ever. So with this latest Black Edition of the GT Speed, we can see the future of luxury trends. We can see the typical luxury of old being mixed with the colour and style of new.
It’s often said that the future of automotive technology can be found in the latest Mercedes S-Class. So in that case, the future luxury and style can be found in a Bentley. Take note luxury car makers, this is how you do it. I urge you, if you’ve got the money and are looking for something different, this is the car for you. Simply brilliant, a triumph of style.