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Bentley puts buyers in the mood for SUV

Teaser video reveals more sleek lines of Bentley’s top-shelf SUV due next year

28 May 2014

BRITISH luxury marque Bentley has again released a teaser of its first SUV, this time revealing several more aspects of the vehicle’s body in a dark and moody video.

The front, side and alloy wheels of the of the big beast – most likely to become the most powerful and fastest production SUV in the world when it lands in showrooms in 2016 – have been shown in the one-minute video with the tag line: “We don’t see lines, we see light”.

British publication Autocar reports that Bentley has a target top speed of 200 miles per hour (320km/h) for the fastest version of the crossover wagon, and has been working on the aerodynamics to this end.

The video appears to back this up, with sleek lines and – by large SUV standards – reasonably low roof profile.

The rear haunches of the body have the familiar Bentley upkick in the body, while the nose has the traditional big mesh grille and round headlights, this time flanked by what appear to be round LED daytime running lights.

It is the second time this year that the Volkswagen-owned company has teased the unnamed SUV, which is set to be powered by a selection of turbocharged V8, W12 and hybrid powertrains.

In March, Bentley showed an image of the SUV bursting through a cloud of sand in an image clearly showing the grille, headlights and general front shape.

The picture conjured up images of the new vehicle at play in the sand dunes of the Middle East, which will likely be a major market.

The company has remodelled the vehicle since it showed its first effort, the EXP 9F concept, at the 2012 Geneva motor show.

Gone are the polarising vertically stacked dual headlight cluster, replaced by a more conventional side-by-side arrangement.

The new vehicle – to sit above the likes of Porsche’s Cayenne and Land Rover’s Range Rover – will be built at Bentley’s Crewe factory as part of a £800 million ($1.4b) investment.

The car is expected to be launched with Bentley’s 373kW/660Nm twin-turbo V8 and 447/800Nm W12 engines, but a V6 plug-in hybrid is also in the pipeline for later launch, perhaps in 2017 as a 2018 model.

The hybrid is expected to provide 30km of travel on battery power before the petrol engine kicks in. It is expected to emit 130 grams of CO2 – better than some small cars.

This year’s Paris motor show is the likely venue for the production vehicle debut, although that is yet to be confirmed.

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