Trying to take the engine out of a Bentley Continental GT is a tricky job, because 12 cylinders leave just millimeters of clearance. Not that an owner would worry about such a thing, but there’s a new Continental in town and it only has eight cylinders. Bentley has gone down the turbo road to get more out of less, bringing two blowers to a 4.0-liter V8 to produce 500 hp and 487 lb-ft of torque. This compares well with the twin-turbo W12’s 552 hp and 479 lb-ft. Connected to an eight-speed auto transmission, a V8 Conti could see off the zero-to-60 mph in under five seconds, much like its bigger cousin. The difference in top speed is academic: 180 mph for the V8, 197.6 for the W12. The new unit can also shut off half its cylinders under light loads. Bentley claims a 40-percent improvement in fuel efficiency and emissions. Although both the coupe and GTC convertible will be offered with the new V8, the old W12 versions will still be available.
Bentley Continental GT - Pieces of Eight