Bentley’s Latest Drop-top is Everything You’d Expect and More
Earlier this year Bentley released a totally redesigned Continental GT, which was the recipient of worldwide acclaim and fanfare. More recently – at the 2018 LA Auto Show taking place in late November – Bentley debuted the drop-top version of the aforementioned, formally known as the Continental GT Convertible.
Overall the Continental GT Convertible isn’t far off from it’s coupe counterpart, which isn’t a bad thing at all. The convertible shares the same 6.0L twin-turbocharged W12 engine which produces 626-horsepower and 664 lb-ft of torque and is mated to an 8-speed dual-clutch transmission, delivering power to its all-wheel-drive system. This allows the Convertible to achieve 0-60 mph in just 3.7 seconds and a top speed of 207 mph.
Due to the extra hardware required for the drop-top mechanism, the Convertible does end up weighing in at 5,322 pounds, which is about 375 pounds more than the metal-top. However, this is still an improvement over the previous iteration of the drop-top, coming in at about 250 pounds lighter and with a much more powerful engine to boot. Ultimately I doubt customers will find much, if any significance in the car’s performance relative to its weight, with such differences between the coupe and convertible being virtually negligible anyway.
Things remain identical with major chassis components as well, with the three-chamber air springs, 48-volt-controlled active anti-roll bars and enormous 10-piston and 4-piston calipers in the front and rear respectively. Yup, that’s 28-pistons to make sure your modern day Cinderella carriage stops like a thoroughbred race horse.
Moving on to what really makes the Convertible different; its drop-top, of course. In expectedly Bentley fashion, the materials for the roof as well as its folding mechanism are extraordinary in themselves – the canvas Z-fold roof will be available in seven colors, with one being a ‘contemporary interpretation of traditional British tweed’ and can be raised or stowed in just 19 seconds with the car moving (up to 30 mph).
Designer-in-chief Simon Blake describes it best, remarking that “We’re Bentley. It’s fair to say (the roof cost) ‘a lot.’ Not just a couple dollars”.
Inside, the car remains opulent as ever with a rich serving of wood panels and high-grade leathers. The Convertible comes standard with 12.3” rotating touchscreen display, and a 2,000 watt Naim stereo is available as an option. Still important – but almost forgettable thanks to plethora of offerings on hand – are the standard neck warmers, and heated seats, armrest and steering wheel for those nippier top-down moments. Customers may commission a bespoke configuration with Bentley’s Mulliner division, should the standard catalogue be deemed insufficient.
According to Bentley, they are slated to begin taking orders for the 2020 Bentley Continental GT Convertible early next year, with the first deliveries to be made soon after. Pricing will start at $236,100 USD.