2012 Bentley Continental V8 – Is 8 Greater Than 12?

2012-Bentley-Continental-GT Our own technical director Frank Markus hosts this week’s episode of Ignition, putting the Bentley Continental GT V8 through its paces at Spain’s Circuito de Navarra race track. After a few laps in the twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8-powered coupe, Markus explains why he’d take the eight-cylinder over the more powerful and expensive W-12 model.

After introducing the car with architect Frank Gehry’s wild Marqués de Riscal hotel as a backdrop, Markus embarks on the one-hour journey to the recently constructed Formula 1 circuit. On the way, we learn that the V-8 model gets 40-percent better fuel economy than the W-12 while achieving the same performance, Bentley claims. Though the Continental GT V8 costs about 10 percent less than the range-topping W-12 model, Markus says he would actually pay more to hear that full-bodied twin-turbo V-8’s sound.

Once at the track, Markus puts the Continental GT’s 500 hp and 487 lb-ft of torque to the test, accelerating to 60 mph in 4.2 seconds. In the 60-0 mph braking test, the V-8-powered Continental GT stops in a solid 106 feet, thanks to its beefy carbon-ceramic brakes wide 21-inch wheels and tires. After completing tests, Markus gives his take on where the Bentley stands in its segment. Find out what he says in the episode below.

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