2020 Bentley Continental GT V8 unveiled

March 19, 2019

Looking for a new uber-luxurious grand tourer? Bentley has just unveiled the 2020 Continental GT V8, in both coupe and convertible form. These follow the introduction of the new-look Continental W12 last year.

Now in its third generation, the Continental GT is now available with a snarling V8 engine option – similar to the predecessor. Specifically, it’s a 4.0-litre twin-turbo unit that develops 405kW (550PS) and an enormous 770Nm. This propels the land yacht from 0-100km/h in just 4.0 seconds for the coupe and 4.1 seconds in the convertible. Fuel economy figures are yet to be finalised but Bentley says the engine offers a grand touring range of over 805km (500 miles).

The latest engine tune comes with twin-scroll turbochargers which are mounted inside the ‘V’ of the cylinder banks, with the intake manifolds on the outer sides. It also showcases the latest cylinder-deactivation technology which is able to shut down four cylinders in suitable conditions to minimise fuel consumption. Behind the engine is an eight-speed automatic.

Ensuring a prominent visual impact, the new Continental GT V8 adopts unique 20-inch 10-spoke alloy wheels. However, buyers can option up to 22-inch wheels for greater presence. Also helping to distinguish the V8 models is a quad-outlet exhaust system and subtle V8 badges on the front guards.

The GT V8 is set to offer a more dynamic driving character than the W12, and comes with various refinements. Front and rear stabiliser bars are hollow and lighter weight to improve handling, and buyers can option for Bentley’s latest Dynamic Ride System as an option. This option brings in three-chamber air springs that can offer stiff sportiness or a more supple ride quality via a mode selector switch in the cabin.

Like the W12 version the new GT V8 uses all-wheel drive for maximum confidence and performance. The front-to-rear torque split is constantly active and adjusts depending on the conditions. Though, Bentley says the setup is designed to use rear-wheel drive as much as possible during normal conditions to optimise fuel efficiency.

Inside, it’s a concoction of handcrafted luxury, with new Crown Cut Walnut trimmings available, fine leather, while the dash includes a fully digital instrument cluster. There’s also an optional ‘Bentley Rotating Display” incorporating a three-sided unit that revolves, with either a 12-3-inch touch-screen or unique analogue dials on display.

Bentley says first customer deliveries will commence in the third quarter of this year in the US, with the rest of the world receiving orders from the first quarter of 2020. Australian prices are yet to be announced.

Brett is the editor and founder of PerformanceDrive. He's obsessed with driving, having played with Matchbox cars until he was tall enough to drive a real one. After initially working as a mechanic, Brett earned a degree in journalism and entered media as an editorial assistant at Top Gear Australia magazine. He then worked at CarAdvice.com.au. His dream is to live next door to the Nurburgring in Germany.