Check back tomorrow for TheDetroitBureau.com’s full review of the 200+ mph Bentley GT Speed.
There are some folks who can never get enough wind in their hair, though with a top speed of 202 miles per hour we’re betting the new 2013 Bentley GT Speed convertible is probably able to deliver about as much top-down excitement as anything on the road.
The new drop-top, billed as the world’s fastest — will make its debut at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show – but Bentley has joined the fast-growing list of makers offering a sneak peek before the official Motor City event later this month.
The second-generation Speed Cabriolet shares much of the fundamentals of the “base” Bentley Continental, but gets some significant performance enhancements – as well as a multi-layer top that provides a top-up experience nearly as quiet as the Continental Coupe.
Despite being billed as delivering 15% better mileage than the outgoing Bentley Continental GT Speed convertible, the new soft-top also gets a bump up to 616 horsepower from its twin-turbo 6.0-liter W-12 engine. Torque is now rated at 590 lb-ft. That’s enough to launch the big cabriolet from 0 to 60 in just 4.1 seconds despite adding 385 pounds to the hardtop model’s mass, largely to firm up the topless chassis.
(The coupe has a top speed of 205 mph and cuts a few tenths off the 0 to 60 time.)
Give part of the credit to the new 8-speed gearbox that purrs along at surprisingly low RPMs even when blasting down the German Autobahn at triple-digit speeds.
“The new GT Speed convertible will appeal to drivers who seek the sensory thrills of the world’s fastest four-seat soft-top and the practicality of a year-round grand tourer,” promises Bentley’s new Chief Executive Wolfgang Schreiber.
Beyond the soft-top, the Continental GT Speed convertible is recognizable by its distinctive grille, blackout chrome air intakes and 21-inch alloy wheels.
As with the Bentley Continental GT Speed coupe, the convertible features a markedly upgraded interior package that includes the latest in digital infotainment technology. For more practical purposes, there’s also a “neck warmer,” a heating vent beneath the front seat headrests that can direct a flow of heated air to allow the car to be used al fresco through more of the year.
The GT Speed coupe carries a price of $213,000 and based on the outgoing models look for a price of closer to $250,000 for the convertible – with final figures and other details expected to be announced at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in less than two weeks.