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Bentley reveals Continental GT Speed Convertible

As fast as its Coupe sibling, the Bentley Speed Convertible is GT’s flagship ragtop

14 Apr 2021

BENTLEY has just announced the chopped roof version of the Continental GT Speed Coupe that was only revealed weeks ago.


Expected to arrive in Australia sometime before the end of the year at prices north of the $471,718 (before on-road costs) that the UK luxury marque last charged for the preceding version back in 2018, the latest Continental GT Speed Convertible concedes nothing in terms of top speed to its tin-topped sibling.


Being a ragtop, the Z-fold style roof is claimed to be the best-insulated and quietest ever devised for this series, whirring away electrically in 19 seconds and at up to 50km/h and available in seven fabric colours on the outside (including tweed!) and eight headliner choices inside – all at extra cost, naturally.


Like the Speed Coupe, the Speed Convertible adopts dark-tint for the massive, imposing grilles, a dark tint radiator matrix, a bespoke body kit with extended sills, chrome ‘Speed’ decals on the front mudguards and uniquely styled 22-inch alloy wheels.


With an identical 485kW of power and a staggering 900Nm of torque offered by a 6.0-litre twin-turbo W12 and eight-speed dual-clutch transmission combination, the Continental GT Speed Convertible can streak to 100km/h from standstill in just 3.7 seconds – that’s just 0.2s shy of the identically powered Coupe – on the way to a 335km/h top speed.


To refresh, the extra ‘Speed’ in the name refers to an additional 18kW over the regular Continental GT, but it’s also much more than that.


Keeping all the additional muscle in check is a modified version of the normal GT’s all-wheel drive platform, with electric four-wheel steering, electronically controlled limited-slip differential and meatier tyres.


The electronic stability and driver-assist systems have been altered for the Speed series, while the brand is offering the option of a carbon-ceramic brake system that brings in 10-piston callipers up front and four-piston callipers out back for an extra measure of security.


But being a Bentley, comfort is also paramount, so in comes in the Coupe’s adaptive air suspension and 48-volt active roll bars that can counteract unwanted body sway through tight bends in only 0.3 seconds.


Multi-toned, specially stitched and diamond-quilted leather seating and swathes of Alcantara and turned aluminium material differentiate the Speed from other GTs, with wood veneers and other timber alternatives also available if that better suits the well-heeled buyer. Alternatively, the brand’s Mulliner coachbuilding division can upholsterer to taste.


And, when the weather turns, a neck warmer is integrated into the heated and vented Comfort Seats, and is said to be both more efficient and quieter than the item used in the previous series.


That said, according to Bentley Motors’ sales and marketing boss Chris Craft, the Speed isn’t just for soaking up the sun in ultimate comfort.


“The new Speed is the most driver-focused Continental GT Convertible available and unique in its ability to offer extremely refined, all-season open-top grand touring with the added edge of astonishing performance and dynamism,” he stated.


“Combined with exquisite, handcrafted interior details, the Continental GT Speed Convertible exemplifies all Bentley knows about creating the world’s most stylish and elegant cars for roof-down motoring.”

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