“Best part? Apparently, the bit in the dash where the nav goes is like a Toblerone bar with three sides and rotates to display either wood trim, extra dash gauges or the sat nav.”
A group of us car guys at the office were talking extensively about the new Continental this morning, and that choice quote above from writer Andrew Connor gets top marks from me. There is a veritable slew of things to love about the newly released Continental’s design, but the three-sided dash mechanism rotates horizontally — a very clever way for Bentley to squeeze a lot into a small space without sacrificing, among other things, a distinguished dashboard.
There were plenty of other opinions flying around the office too, summarized best by my favorite reaction to the photos: “whoa.” Indeed, this is welcome news: the original Continental GT iteration is now 14 years old; a design refresh a while back updated things a bit. But the concept is so top-down sexy, with its gorgeous faceted headlights, its lower, wider, flatter overall shape, and its less bulky girth. Its overall design obviously pulls from Bentley’s electric EXP 10 Speed 6 concept (whose premiere I witnessed personally and streamed live on GP’s Instagram — see below).
Beyond its looks, the new car is almost 200 pounds lighter thanks to lightweight metals in the architecture and body. A turbocharged 12-cylinder producing 626 horsepower will move the $200,000 (base) car along swiftly and smoothly. Apparently, 107 square feet of wood is used inside the car. Technology, which is part of the “Toblerone” rotating dash, looks to be much more like the magnificent Bentayga, which is universes beyond tech in the older lineup.
Bottom line: in 2003, the Continental GT was the status-symbol cruiser; it grew old and lost its way a bit since then. But now it’s back, and beautiful as ever.