Bentley introduces V8 engine to Bentayga line-up

Bentley Bentayga V8

Bentley Bentayga V8

The smaller engine will make the V8 Bentayga cheaper than the flagship W12 model, but still by no means "affordable".

The Bentley Bentayga SUV range is being extended with a new V8-engined model. Set to debut at the Detroit auto show next week, the V8 Bentayga will be offered globally with a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 good for 550 hp and 568 lb-ft of torque that will occupy the middle rung in the powerplant lineup, above the diesel V8 but below the W12 gasoline version.

Several new trim options, as well as distinctive tail pipes, will set this Bentayga apart from the W12 model. The engine is mated to an 8-speed automatic and hustles the big SUV to 60 miles per hour in 4.4 seconds and to a top speed of 180 miles per hour.

The Bentayga V8's 2395kg kerb weight to the Diesel's 2506 and the W12's 2440kg means that efficiency is up, too, with stop-start technology contributing to claimed average fuel economy of 24.8mpg and Carbon dioxide emissions of 260g/km to the other cars' respective 35.8mpg and 210g/km and 21.6mpg and 296g/km. This model will also offer optional carbon-ceramic brakes that the company calls "the largest and most powerful ever fitted to a Bentley, and the largest front brake system available on any production vehicle".

The Bentayga comes with Bentley Dynamic Ride that uses a 48V electrical system to control the active roll setup that helps prevent much body roll through the corners.

Bentley Bentayga V8

Bentley's standard infotainment system is also fitted, featuring an 8in touchscreen, 60-gigabyte hard drive, and for passengers in the rear there's a 10.2in Android tablet device with 4G WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.

Bentayga V8 models should get a drop in curb weight over the W12 model, allowing the Bentayga to dance a little easier in traffic.

Meanwhile, three sound systems are offered: Bentley Standard Audio, Bentley Signature Audio and the 18-speaker, 1,950-watt Naim for Bentley Premium Audio system.

A Bentley isn't complete without a deeply luxurious interior and the Bentayga V8 is no exception. However, fans of the brand will recognize the figure-8 shape of the Bentayga V8's exhaust tips, as well as the vehicle's distinct black and chrome grille. The same four, five or seven-seat layout as other models can be specified, along with a near-endless combination of trim materials and high-quality leathers. New styling features include a wood and hide steering wheel and the introduction of a high-gloss carbon fiber dash panel.

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