Bentley Continental Supersports
Bentley introduces Continental Supersports
25 February 2009 | The Continental Supersports is the fastest and most powerful Bentley ever. It is the extreme Bentley, a muscular two-seater that delivers supercar performance and a highly focused driving experience. The Supersports is also the first Bentley capable of running on both petrol (gasoline) and biofuel, pioneering the use of FlexFuel technology in the luxury sector. This represents stage one of the company's commitment to make its complete model range compatible with renewable fuels by 2012.
Available worldwide from autumn 2009, the Continental Supersports will be FlexFuel compatible in the majority of markets from launch with North American cars offering the capability by summer 2010, following regulatory approval.
The Continental Supersports began as an 'under the radar' project exploring the possibilities of weight reduction on the Continental GT but with more power and torque. A largely experimental process crystallised over a period of 24 months into an official new car programme, driven by the passion and enthusiasm of a small group of Bentley engineers and designers.
The results are dramatic. With 630PS (621 bhp) and new 'Quickshift' transmission that halves shift times, the Supersports sets new performance benchmarks for Bentley. It accelerates from 0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds (0-100 km/h in 3.9 seconds) onto a top speed of 204 mph (329 km/h).
Supercar performance is complemented by an array of chassis enhancements including retuned steering and suspension, utilising lighter weight components, retuned dampers and anti-roll bars. Agility is sharpened by the 40:60 rear-biased torque split for the all-wheel drive system, a wider rear track, bespoke lightweight 20-inch alloy wheels and a unique electronic stability programme.
Carbon ceramic brakes are standard fitment, benefiting steering response, grip and ride comfort, while saving weight. Overall, the engineering team have achieved a weight reduction of 110 kg (243 lb) compared with the Continental GT Speed.
The Supersports is further distinguished from its Continental coupe stable mates by a unique dark-smoked steel finish to all exterior 'brightware', including front grilles, lamp bezels, window surrounds and wheels. A complex 'Physical Vapour Deposition' process is applied to all stainless steel components to give a lustrous and highly durable finish. A car industry first, this process is normally used as a coating on industrial tools, watches and even hip replacement joints.
Fully embracing the extreme spirit of the Supersports, Bentley's interior designers have created a unique ambience. The cockpit represents a dramatic re-interpretation of Bentley interior design in which carbon fibre and AlcantaraTM not only convey a sporting and contemporary style but also reduce weight.
The Supersports is a strict two-seater featuring all-new lightweight sports seats with carbon fibre clamshell rear panels. In the rear compartment, the seats are replaced by a stowage deck with a carbon fibre luggage retaining beam.
The 'Supersports' name is inspired by the original two-seater 3-litre Supersports model introduced in 1925, itself an evolution of the 3-litre Speed. The lightweight, 85 bhp Supersports was the first production Bentley to reach 100 mph and was also renowned for the application of Le Mans-winning race technology.