This is the Bentayga, and not only is it the world's fastest SUV, its probably the most luxurious. It’s the tricky-to-spell, difficult-to-miss Bentayga. Or, as Bentley modestly describes it, ‘the fastest, most powerful, most luxurious SUV in the world’.
And when Bentley says its the fastest, dem sabi wetin dem dey talk o, because under the Bentayga’s significant bonnet sits a new version of Bentley’s 6.0-litre W12, with twin-scroll turbos plus high and low pressure direct fuel injection. An official 296g/km and 21.6mpg likely won’t be of much concern to potential Bentayga owners like me, lol. A stated 600bhp and 663lb ft of torque certainly will.
Such power will haul the 2.2-tonne Bentayga from 0-60mph in four seconds flat, and on to a v-max of 187mph. 187! In a full-fat SUV! Leaving aside the modified efforts of Germany’s ambitious tuning houses, no 4x4 will dispatch autobahns quicker. Fastest and most powerful? Check and check.
And most luxurious? More difficult to prove numerically, but if you equate luxury to ticket price, the big Bentley’s got that one licked too, im sure they will sell it like N100m when it lands Naija.
If you want to spend even more cash, you can spec your Bentayga with its own glitzy picnic set – contained within its own three-piece luggage set designed to fit snugly in the boot, naturally – or even a Breitling Tourbillon dash clock that spins at the press of a button.
|The Bentayga Breitling Tourbillon Clock|
It is devastatingly, effortlessly fast, the Bentayga. Maximum torque is available from just 1350rpm, giving an open-the-fire-hoses surge of power whenever, wherever you deploy the throttle.
Combined with the high vantage point, such point-and-squirt pace makes it a mighty overtaking weapon on all but the narrowest roads. Throw in the near-silence of cabin even at silly, silly speeds, and you’re looking at a disarmingly easy car in which to slip far beyond the speed limit, whatever the speed limit.
It’s the sort of car in which, almost inevitably, ends with an encounter with an angry policeman and the line: “Do you know how fast you were going back there, sir?”
“Absolutely no idea. I’m guessing ‘really, really fast’?”
Things get yet more impressive when you push the Bentayga hard through a series of fast corners. With the air suspension dialed into ‘Sport’ mode, the Bentley does an extraordinary job at resisting body roll, staying flat and doing a very convincing impression of a far lighter car. Thank a new 48-volt active anti-roll system that, says Bentley, reacts three times faster than a conventional hydraulic anti-roll system.
It works. Grip levels are mighty, the Bentayga encouraging you to deploy as much of its 600bhp as possible at every opportunity. It’s predictably, monstrously effective, and potentially the recipe for one of the fastest, messiest road accidents in automotive history.
And how’s the Interior?
Predictably splendiferous. No other company does interiors quite like Bentley does interiors, and the Bentayga develops Crewe’s game even further. There are no fewer than 15 leather colours, and seven choices of veneer, allowing for colour combinations ranging from ‘understated’ to, um, ‘devastated’.
It’s the little details: rather than conventional plastic, the instrument binnacle screen is made of mineral glass, the same material you’ll find on the face of posh watches.
Close the doors, and they squeeze flush-shut with a perfect, motorised click. The window glass looks – and feels – thick enough to stop gunfire. Please don’t test this at home.
The new infotainment system – with eight-inch main screen and 60GB hard drive – is a world beyond that of the current Continental, finally putting Bentley within swinging distance of the poshest offerings of Mercedes and the BMW group.
Top it off with some smart self-driving tech – lane assist and adaptive cruise control that works even in stop-start traffic – and the Bentayga proves a relaxing place to spend time, a car that simply vacuums up miles without causing so much as a furrow in the brow of its driver.
Put it this way: if someone stuck you in a Bentayga in New York on Monday morning and told you to be in Los Angeles by, say, Tuesday evening, you wouldn’t bat an eyelid. It’d be a pleasure.
You’ve got eyes. Make your own mind up. Having seen it in the metal, all we’ll add is this: it may not be the most elegant, flowing of designs, but afrom every angle but front on, the Bentayga does a decent job of disguising its significant proportions, appearing somewhat lower and less vast than its dimensions would suggest.
Second, it’s very colour-dependent. Go for a dark shade and steer clear of the most liberal lumps of brightwork, and you’ll have a hyper-SUV rather subtler than the gold Bentayga of the original press shots from its Frankfurt unveiling.
And to those griping whether such a grand sports car maker should really be doing something as nouveau as an SUV, we’d say only this: the Bentley range already contains the Flying Spur and big Mulsanne. Is an 187mph SUV really that much of a brand stretch?
For me, if you can afford it, why not? I mean a Bentley SUV? do you know the respect you will command? lol but im sure it will be quite expensive o. A Mulsanne goes for like N100m in Naija, hiw much will a Bentley SUV now cost? So ill just say, if you fit afford am, buy am.
In Naija Yet?
Im not sure o, i haven't spotted one, and im sure @supercarsofnigeria followers are on the look out for one, if we spot, it will be featured on our post, who knows, e fit be say na me go own the first one, Amen o, na prayer.
Im Ladi Bentley, goodnight, more photos after the cut...