Four fewer cylinders, still plenty potent

Lovers of the opulent, over-the-top Bentley Bentayga have reason to get excited, as the British automaker just announced it would expand the nameplate’s offerings with a new V-8 model. While slightly down on power compared to the previous 12-cylinder variant, the new Bentayga V8 still comes brimming with luxury, technology, and impressive speed.

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The V-8 also manages up to 25 combined mpg thanks to start/stop tech and cylinder deactivation that turns the 'eight into a four-banger, a vast improvement compared to the W-12 model's 15 mpg combined.

When Bentley initially announced its intentions to create its very first SUV, it hoped to do it right by offering customers the fastest, most powerful, and most expensive SUV in the world. The end result is a luxury box on wheels with a twin-turbo 6.0-liter W-12 engine, 600 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque, an eight-speed automatic transmission, AWD, advanced air suspension, a 0-to-60 mph time of 3.5 seconds, and a top speed of 187 mph. Pricing starts at over $200,000.

All told, Bentley frames the Bentayga as “the ultimate Grand Touring experience unrestricted by landscape or conditions.” Impressive stuff, no doubt about it, but obviously any time you create the “ultimate” of anything, you leave the door open for the creation of something, well, slightly less ultimate.

Enter the V-8 model, which arrives with a VW-sourced 4.0-liter V-8 powerplant, once again packing in the air thanks to two turbochargers. Standout features include 32 valves and a hot-vee placement for the twin-scroll turbos. Peak output is rated at 542 horsepower and 568 pound-feet of torque, while the top speed clocks in at 180 mph and the 0-to-60 mph sprint is achieved in 4.4 seconds. The V-8 also manages up to 25 combined mpg thanks to start/stop tech and cylinder deactivation that turns the ’eight into a four-banger, a vast improvement compared to the W-12 model’s 15 mpg combined.

Bentley Adds More Flavor To Its Lineup With A V-8 Bentayga Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Peak output is rated at 542 horsepower and 568 pound-feet of torque, while the top speed clocks in at 180 mph and the 0-to-60 mph sprint is achieved in 4.4 seconds.

Bentley claims that this new V-8 model assumes the nameplate’s “most sporting guise to date,” but considering the numbers in play here, we can’t help but question that statement. After all, the V-8 isn’t as powerful and the model isn’t nearly as fast as the ’12, while the rest of the equipment looks more or less unchanged.

Drivetrain Specifications

Bentley Bentayga V-8 Bentley Bentayga W-12
Type 4.0-litre, 32-valve, twin-turbocharged V8 6-litre twin-turbocharged W12 TSI
Max Power 542 HP @ 6,000 RPM 600 HP @ 5,250-6,000 RPM
Max Torque 568 LB-FT @ 1,960-4,500 RPM 664 LB-FT @ 1,250-4,500 RPM
Transmission ZF eight-speed automatic gearbox, permanent all-wheel drive with 40:60 front to rear torque split ZF eight-speed automatic gearbox
Top speed 180 mph / 290 km/h 187 mph / 301 km/h
0-60 mph 4.4 secs 4.0 secs
0-100 km/h 4.5 secs 4.1 secs

But maybe Bentley is referring to the brakes, as the V-8 Bentayga also comes with the option for carbon ceramic stoppers. This motorsport-inspired system is a first for the model, and Bentley brags its the largest front brake system available on any production car on the market, measuring in with enormous 440 mm (17.3-inch) diameter discs and 10-pot calipers. Meanwhile, the rear gets 370 mm (14.6-inch) diameter brake discs.

Keeping it shiny side up is a multi-mode suspension system, with Bentley Drive Dynamics offering a variety of settings that adjust the SUV’s attitude to better suit either comfort or sportiness. The V-8 Bentayga also continues with standard off-roading settings for the Drive Dynamics system, and includes a variety of variable for the ride height.

Bentley Adds More Flavor To Its Lineup With A V-8 Bentayga Exterior
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Bentley brags the optional carbon brakes are the largest front brakea available on any production car on the market, measuring in with enormous 440 mm (17.3-inch) diameter discs and 10-pot calipers.

In terms of aesthetics, the V-8 Bentayga offers buyers 11 individual wheel design options, including a new 22-inch five-spoke design painted in polished black. Overall though, the V-8 model looks quite similar to the older W-12 model, with only minor visual cues added as indication of the new engine under the hood. That includes a black chrome grille up front and twin-quad exhaust tips in back.

Inside, the V-8 Bentayga continues the theme of superlative luxury, and now gets new wood trim and hide on the steering wheel, plus a new carbon fiber panel in high-gloss finish for extra sporting cred. A high-end stereo is also on the options list, offering 1,950 watts of power routed through 18 speakers. An 8-inch touchscreen takes its place in front, and there’s a removable 10.2-inch Android tablet in back, plus onboard WiFi support. Rounding out the tech suite is a variety of driver assists, such as adaptive cruise control, traffic assist, park assist, night vision, traffic sign recognition, and the like.

Bentley Adds More Flavor To Its Lineup With A V-8 Bentayga Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Pricing for the V-8 Bentayga has not yet been announced, but we expect it to be well below that of the W-12 model.

Pricing for the V-8 Bentayga has not yet been announced, but we expect it to be well below that of the W-12 model.

For reference, the new Bentayga will go up against competitors like the Mercedes-Benz G-Class and Land Rover Range Rover Supercharged.

The Merc is powered by a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 making around 415 horsepower and comes packing with some very impressive off-roading chops, and the whole package is expected to see a solid upgrade with the up-and-coming 2019 model year. Pricing starts at $123,600.

Meanwhile, the Range Rover gets 510 horsepower and 461 pound-feet of torque thanks to a blown 5.0-liter V-8, and while it’s definitely designed primary for paved-road duty, it’s got the goods for a jaunt in the rough stuff as well. Pricing starts at $104,890.

References

Bentley Bentayga

2017 Bentley Bentayga High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2017 Bentley Bentayga.

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Since its introduction, the Bentley Bentayga has defined a new sector and set the luxury SUV benchmark, offering customers the ultimate Grand Touring experience unrestricted by landscape or conditions. The award-winning Bentley model is now available in its most sporting guise to date – the Bentayga V8.

At the heart of the latest Bentayga model is a new-generation 4.0-litre, twin-turbocharged V8 petrol engine which combines immense power with impressive fuel efficiency. The addition of a characteristic V8 burble, stylish twin-quad exhaust pipes and optional carbon-ceramic brakes, reveals more of the luxury SUV’s sporting character.

Sitting at the core of the Bentayga range, the new V8 model fuses exquisite luxury with power, usability and extensive sporting ability. Its responsive performance is fully customisable on demand by the driver through Bentley’s Drive Dynamics system, from limousine-like refinement to sporting precision.

Inside, customers will recognise Bentley’s unique approach to modern luxury tailoring, with the familiar blend of exquisite handcrafted materials and advanced technologies. New styling features include a wood and hide steering wheel and the introduction of a high-gloss carbon-fibre interior panel finish.

Immense Performance, Impressive Efficiency

At the heart of the new Bentayga V8 sits an all-new 4.0-litre, 32-valve, V8 engine featuring dual twin-scroll turbochargers located inside the ‘V’ of the engine.

The dynamic unit develops 542 bhp (550 PS) and 568 lb.ft. (770 Nm) of torque, resulting in a top speed of 180 mph (290 km/h) and 0-60 mph in 4.4 seconds (100 km/h in 4.5 seconds).

The class-leading performance of the Bentayga V8 is complemented by a range of 464 miles (746 km), with CO2 emissions of 260 g/km. This refined efficiency (24.8 mpg / 11.4 l/100 km combined) comes, in part, through the ability of the engine to de-activate four of its eight cylinders in suitable conditions, without compromising the drive. The seamless change happens in just 20 milliseconds, making it imperceptible to customers.

The addition of Stop-Start technology, which can activate at ‘near-to-stop’ speeds, also contributes to the emissions figure.

This unique blend of power and refinement gives the Bentayga V8 a distinct, unrivalled position in the luxury SUV market.

Striking, Individual Exterior Design

The exterior design of the Bentayga V8 reflects the model’s sporting position within the Bentayga family.

The shape is defined by the Bentayga’s unique muscular, sculptural lines, balancing athleticism with an unmistakable presence on the road. From the four round LED headlamps to the large matrix grille, the Bentayga V8 exudes the Bentley design DNA, while the overt powerline, large rear haunches and raised ride height reflect the rugged off-road ability of the luxury SUV.

For the first time, optional carbon-ceramic brakes are offered on the Bentayga. The braking system is the largest and most powerful ever fitted to a Bentley, and the largest front brake system available on any production car.

The brake discs measure 440 mm in diameter at the front and 370 mm at the rear, and sit inside enormous Bentley-branded calipers, with 10 pistons at the front. Together these provide a maximum braking torque of 6,000 Nm.

Also introduced on the Bentayga V8 are sporting red brake calipers for the front and rear standard iron brakes. The calipers are painted in special, high-temperature resistant Tornado red paint, and signal strongly the dynamic intent of this performance-oriented Bentayga V8.

In front of these sit a choice of 11 wheel designs, including an all-new 22” five-spoke wheel with black painted and polished finish.

A purposeful black and chrome grille at the front is complemented by Bentley ‘twin-quad’ exhaust tailpipes at rear, both of which provide a further subtle reminder of the new engine specification.

Sublime, Handcrafted Luxury Interior

The Bentayga V8 continues the Bentley tradition of intricate detailing and fine, handcrafted precision using authentic materials. Customers can specify hand cross-stitching, which highlights the interior styling lines of the seats and door panels, and there is the choice of the Bentayga’s four-, five-, or seven-seat configuration, for ultimate versatility.

Three innovative new interior options are offered in the Bentayga V8: a high-gloss carbon-fibre finish replacing traditional veneer surfaces; a wood and hide steering wheel; and a new rich red leather, Cricket Ball.

For the first time in a Bentley, a high-gloss carbon-fibre finish is offered to customers seeking a contemporary, technical feel. Bentley has traditionally offered a matt carbon-fibre surface to replace the veneer on panels including the fascia, centre console and door waistrails, but this is the first time the finish has been offered with a high gloss, which enhances the technical weave.

Another first – the wood and hide trimmed steering wheel – can be specified in the Bentayga V8. Uniquely, the new three-spoke, wood and hide trimmed wheel (available in seven different veneer finishes) uses a solid wood base and thus maintains the integrity and authenticity of interior features offered by Bentley.

Cricket Ball leather makes its debut in the Bentayga V8. The evocative new colour is inspired by the traditional and instantly appealing deep chestnut hue of a new cricket ball, and fits perfectly into the inspiring range of 15 interior colours and five colour splits offered by Bentley.

Effortless Bentley Performance, Unrestrained by Climate or Terrain

The Bentayga V8 is available with Bentley Dynamic Ride – the world’s first electric active roll control technology that utilises a 48V system. This system instantly counteracts lateral rolling forces when cornering and ensures maximum tyre contact to deliver class-leading cabin stability, ride comfort and exceptional handling.

Bentley’s adaptive and reactive system provides variable torsional resistance, allowing the Bentayga to be both dynamically capable and comfortable for all occupants at all times. The pioneering use of a 48V system results in silent, instantaneous responses to deal with all road surfaces.

The Bentayga V8 offers class-leading ride comfort, steering feel and handling thanks to the partnership of a highly sophisticated chassis and Electronic Stability Control (ESC). In addition to advanced, multi-mode Traction Control (TCS), the Bentayga also features Hill Descent Control.

Electric Power-Assisted Steering (EPAS) is also featured on the Bentayga. The new system improves feedback to the driver, while providing isolation from steering kick-back both on- and off-road. EPAS also features a variable rack ratio, permitting light and fast steering while manoeuvring at low speeds, as well as a more subdued response for excellent stability at high speeds.

The Bentayga offers the widest range of on- and off-road drive settings of any vehicle via Bentley’s Drive Dynamics Mode and optional All-Terrain Specification. Up to eight modes (four on- and four off-road) are available, allowing drivers, at the simple turn of a dial, to select the perfect dynamic set-up for any surface or road condition.

All-Terrain Specification allows the customer to select the appropriate vehicle settings for a wide range of off-road surfaces, including Snow & Grass, Dirt & Gravel, Mud & Trail and Sand Dunes. Meanwhile, the Driver Information Panel displays information on pitch, roll, wheel articulation, steering angle, compass bearing and altitude.

The Bentayga V8 comes with multi-mode air suspension. The driver has four different modes to choose from: High 2, High 1, Normal and Low. High 2, for example, can be manually selected when tackling more severe off-road surfaces. Customers can also lower the rear suspension via a switch in the boot, to ease loading and trailer hitching.

Hill Descent Control automatically regulates the vehicle’s speed on steep declines, allowing the driver to concentrate fully on steering and obstacles ahead. It can be pre-set at speeds between two and 30 km/h (going in either direction) and works on gradients greater than five per cent.

Innovative Features and Advanced Technologies

A suite of state-of-the-art driver assistance systems and infotainment features designed to enhance safety, comfort and convenience make the Bentayga V8 an innovative, advanced and connected luxury SUV.

Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) including Stop & Go, Predictive ACC and Traffic Assist enables the driver to maintain a set distance to the vehicle in front. Predictive ACC uses the navigation data, sensors and cameras to predict upcoming corners, city boundaries and speed-limit changes and can then modify the vehicle speed accordingly, improving both comfort and fuel economy.

In urban environments, there are a number of driver aids available on the Bentayga V8. These systems – such as Traffic Sign Recognition, which detects a wide variety of traffic signs and displays information to the driver; Rear Crossing Traffic Warning, which uses radar technology to detect crossing traffic when reversing out of a parking space; and Top View, a system which uses four cameras to display an overall picture of the vehicle’s surroundings – combine to enhance everyday usability.

Park Assist is also available – a system that detects suitable parking spaces (both parallel and perpendicular) before autonomous steering takes over to support parking manoeuvres.

Other innovative systems available include Night Vision, which uses infra-red technology to identify potential obstacles ahead, and a Head-Up Display, which reduces driver distraction and increases safety.

The Bentayga’s 8” touch screen infotainment system boasts class-leading navigation technology, a 60GB hard drive, and a choice of up to 30 languages. Rear seat passengers benefit from the introduction of the Bentley Entertainment Tablet – a removable 10.2” Android device with 4G, WiFi and Bluetooth for effortless, high-speed on-board connectivity.

Customers can choose between three different sound systems for the Bentayga V8: Bentley Standard Audio, Bentley Signature Audio and Naim for Bentley Premium Audio. The latter is the most powerful system in the segment, with 1,950 watts, a network of 18 speakers and super-tweeters for unrivalled recreation of the highest audio frequencies.

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